Policy paper

Memorandum of understanding between the Regulator of Social Housing and the Housing Ombudsman

The memorandum of understanding sets out the functions of both organisations, describing arrangements in place for them to work together.


Memorandum of understanding between the Housing Ombudsman and the Regulator of Social Housing

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The Regulator for Social Housing and the Housing Ombudsman have different functions but have arrangements in place for the 2 bodies to work together.

The memorandum of understanding sets out how the Ombudsman informs the Regulator of potential systemic issues relating to compliance with the Regulator’s standards. It also confirms how the Regulator signposts tenants, or their representatives, who are seeking resolution of individual complaints, to the Ombudsman.

Regulator for Social Housing

The Regulator for Social Housing is part of the Homes and Communities Agency. It sets both ‘consumer’ and ‘economic’ regulatory standards, but in line with its statutory framework it focuses on economic regulation of private registered providers of social housing (including housing associations).

The Regulator is legally obliged to regulate in a way that minimises interference and regulates consumer standards reactively, focusing on potential systemic failure. It does not resolve individual complaints and cannot mediate in disputes between landlords and tenants.

Further information on the regulatory framework and the standards can be found on the Regulatory Standards page.

Housing Ombudsman Service

The Housing Ombudsman Service seeks to resolve complaints from individuals about registered providers of social housing and some managing agents and private landlords who are voluntary members. It deals with each complaint to find the best outcome for the individual circumstances.

The service aims to encourage the resolution of complaints early wherever possible so it provides advice and support to help the parties resolve matters between themselves. Where a dispute has not been resolved within the landlord’s complaints procedure, it will work with the landlord and complainant to reach agreement. If not resolved, it may formally investigate the complaint and can make orders and award compensation if there is evidence of maladministration.

For more information on the Ombudman’s role, see the What we do leaflet.

Contact information

While we have different functions, we have arrangements in place to cooperate and communicate with each other within our legal frameworks. We will signpost people to each other where appropriate. If you are unsure which organisation is the most relevant to deal with your issue, you can contact both organisations at the same time.

Contact the Housing Ombudsman Service by:

Contact the Regulator of Social Housing by:

Published 21 April 2017