5. Scottish Firms Impact Test
In the private rented sector, landlords are expected to ensure that the homes they let meet a statutory repairing standard at the start of a tenancy, and at all times during a tenancy.
- The repairing standard includes the requirement that a house is wind and watertight and in all other respects reasonably fit for human habitation.
- Section 22 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014 inserted new duties into the Repairing Standard including (i) electrical safety inspections to be carried out at five year intervals and (ii) carbon monoxide detectors to be installed where fixed combustion appliances are present.
Private landlords will be obliged to take steps to ensure compliance with any new elements added to the repairing standard.
Engagement with CHQS Forum members helped shape the consultation. Continued engagement with stakeholders (including members of the CHQS Forum) will be vitally important as proposals are considered to introduce new elements to the Repairing Standard to ensure tenants living in private lets (i) enjoy the same standard of accommodation as those in social let properties and (ii) benefit from additional safety element requirements .
We will specifically engage with representatives of private landlords to seek views on the timescales for introducing new elements to the repairing standard so that, as far as possible, work needed to meet the standard can be factored into planned programmes of maintenance. We are also seeking views on integrating timescales with wider government targets, such as our targets for tackling carbon emissions.
During the consultation period, the Scottish Government will be hosting some events to provide an opportunity for face to face discussions on the consultation document in general and more specifically about the questions posed within.
Private landlords will be required to take steps to ensure compliance with any additional elements to the Repairing Standard. To comply, they will be required to ensure any work carried out on properties is carried out to a high standard by reputable contactors. Where private landlords rent out a few properties in the same area, small local businesses are most likely to benefit from related works. Where private landlords rent out a significant number of properties located in several locations, medium or larger enterprises may be employed. Contracts may go out to tender giving a range of businesses the opportunity to bid for the work.
The nature of the work is unlikely to impact on competitiveness of Scottish companies within the UK or elsewhere in Europe. The following competition assessment questions have been considered and it is felt unlikely that any new measures will have a significant impact on competition.
- Will the measure directly or indirectly limit the number or range of suppliers?
- Will the measure limit the ability of supplier to compete?
- Will the measure limit suppliers' incentive to compete vigorously?
- Will the measure limit the choices and information available to consumers?
Our view is that the answer is no to each of these tests.
There is the potential for job creation opportunities to undertake related works.
Test run of business forms
If any new business forms are required as may be the case in relation to safety elements, appropriate professional bodies will be involved in drawing up such forms.
Email: Agnes Meany