Regulator stresses key role for auditors

Ian Brennan
Ian Brennan, the Regulator’s director of finance & risk

The Scottish Housing Regulator has stressed the key role of auditors in registered social landlords’ (RSL) risk management and compliance with regulatory standards.

Speaking at the SFHA’s Finance Conference in Crieff, Ian Brennan, the Regulator’s director of finance & risk, said: “Internal auditors have an important job to do in providing assurance to governing bodies that the RSL is meeting regulatory standards and properly managing risk. For any regulated organisation, in any sector, a failure to comply with regulatory standards should be seen as a key risk.

“The external auditors can also help here. Their main job is to decide whether the accounts show a true and fair view. But RSLs should ask their external auditor to plan their work in such a way that there is a reasonable chance of detecting any material non-compliance with the regulatory standards.”

In a wide ranging address, Ian set out the Regulator’s view that overall the sector remains on a firm financial footing but faces serious challenges in the future from pension funding, welfare reform and keeping rents affordable at a time of low inflation.

He praised RSLs for the high level of co-operation in working with the Regulator to protect tenants’ interests. He noted that where the Regulator has used its statutory powers of intervention, senior staff and governing body members from a number of landlords have played a crucial role by agreeing to join the governing bodies of RSLs which needed their help.

You can read Ian’s full speech here.

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