Scottish Government Respond Positively to Working Group’s Recommendation for Maintenance of Tenement Scheme Property
Last year we brought you up to date on the work of the Cross-Party Working Group, created to consider the pressing need for a more robust maintenance regime for blocks of flats in Scotland.
The Working Group made its Final Recommendations to Scottish Government in Autumn 2019 and in December 2019 Scottish Government responded to the Working Group’s Report and Recommendations.
The following summarises the Scottish Government’s Response, which can be found at https://www.gov.scot/publications/tenement-maintenance-report-scottish-government-response/
- Scottish Government agree that action is needed to improve the condition of Scotland’s blocks of flats and tenements to ensure that buildings provide good quality, safe and sustainable homes in the future.
- Scottish Government will engage with the Scottish Law Commission on the 3 Recommendations brought forward in the Report, with a view to referring these matters to the Scottish Law Commission to carry out a Law Reform project and ultimately a draft Bill, becoming legislation.
- This work will extend to ongoing fire safety and energy efficiency considerations.
- These 2 additional areas complement the following 3 Recommendations made by the Working Group.
- 5 yearly building inspections of all scheme property (common property)
- an Owner’s Association for each block of flats/tenement
- establishment of Building Reserve Funds
- Scottish Government have described the aspiration for an Act of Parliament in 2025 as ambitious, but not impossible, acknowledging the current workload of the Scottish Law Commission.
- Scottish Government recognise that incremental change is desirable and will seek to support voluntary change through a number of areas, such as supporting the development of good practice amongst homeowners, and the development of a form for a tenement condition report, as well as tenement condition to be included as part of ongoing considerations on improvement to Home Reports.
Hacking and Paterson Management Services’ Chairman, Mr Neil Watt, has been a key contributor to the Working Group’s journey and will continue to retain a keen interest as matters develop in the coming years.
It seems that compulsory 5 yearly building inspections will become a requirement for all homeowners and this will be supported by a compulsory Owners’ Association which would have control over the establishment of a building reserve fund. These 3 areas brought forward in recommendation, are services which Hacking and Paterson Management Services already provide to a number of properties.
In anticipation of forthcoming legislation, we are keen to develop building inspection programmes for properties and to assist with the establishment of Owners’ Associations and Reserve Funds.
We are interested in working with Owners’ Groups and where commitment can be illustrated by Owners’ Groups, Hacking and Paterson Management Services would be willing to assist with funding of setting up such a project. If this is of interest to you and your fellow owners, then please get in touch with your Property Manager.