Capital Funding Guide

4. Housing for Rent

This chapter sets out the procedures and conditions which must be followed by providers progressing schemes for rent, including Affordable Rent and Social Rent. This chapter also sets out eligibility and procedures for works to Registered Providers’ existing rental stock.

1. Overview

1.1 Purpose

1.1.1 This chapter sets out the procedures and conditions which must be followed by providers progressing schemes for rent, including Affordable Rent and Social Rent. This chapter also sets out eligibility and procedures for works to Registered Providers’ existing rental stock.

1.2 Context

1.2.1 Affordable Rent and Social Rent are forms of low cost rental social housing.

1.2.2 Under the Agency’s Shared Ownership and Affordable Homes Programme (SOAHP), rent provision will be supported in:

  • The provision of new supply of affordable housing
  • Nil grant schemes
  • Conversion of Social Rent to Affordable Rent
  • Delivery of existing commitments

1.2.3 The following scheme types are included under the Rent heading:

  • New Build including Acquisition & Works, Off the Shelf and Works Only schemes
  • Rehabilitation including Acquisition & Works, Existing Satisfactory, Purchase and Repair and Works Only schemes
  • Re-improvement of provider-owned stock but not Major Repairs. Note that Major Repairs are covered by the Repair chapter of this Guide

For further information on scheme types please refer to Procurement and Scheme Issues section 3 .

1.2.4 Section 31(2) of the Housing and Regeneration Act 2008 requires that when any sub market rent properties, funded by the Agency, are made available, the landlord must be a Registered Provider and are therefore subject to the Regulator’s Standards and regulation regime.

1.2.5 All homes are expected to be let at the rent listed in the original bid. Where there are to be changes to the rents forecast in the original offer the provider must notify the Agency. The Agency may require a revised offer submission for the scheme as the revised rent may affect the amount of grant payable on a scheme.

1.3 Main features - Affordable Rent

1.3.1 Affordable Rent property is made available for rent up to a maximum of 80% of gross market rent (inclusive of service charges). For further information see section 2.

1.3.2 Section 2.4 of Decision Instrument 5 ‘Revision to the Tenancy Standard: Affordable Rent’ required that any homes offered at an Affordable Rent must have been delivered through a contract with the Agency or converted to Affordable Rent as part of an agreed conversion programme to support delivery of homes from an Agency affordable homes contract.

1.3.3 Allocations and nominations processes for Affordable Rent homes are expected to comply with the requirements of the Tenancy Standard; and Registered Providers will be under the same statutory and regulatory obligations as they are when allocating properties for Social Rent.

1.3.4 The Regulator’s tenancy standard requires Registered Providers to grant general needs tenants a periodic secure, periodic assured or assured shorthold (excluding periodic assured shorthold) tenancy. The tenancy must be for a minimum fixed term of five years, or exceptionally, a tenancy for a minimum fixed term of no less than two years, in addition to any probationary tenancy period. Any exceptional circumstances in which Registered Providers intend to grant fixed-term tenancies for a term of less than five years must be clearly set out in their tenancy policies. For further information see section 3.

1.3.5 Affordable Rent schemes are also subject to the Regulator’s Rent Standard, but are not subject to the formula in the government’s guidance on rents for social housing 2014.

1.4 Main features – Social Rent

1.4.1 Social Rent is low cost rental social housing that is made available at rent levels that are set in accordance with the regulator’s Rent Standard (including Rent Standard Guidance). For further information regarding Social Rents please refer to the Rent Standard (including Rent Standard Guidance).

1.4.2 1.As per the SOAHP 2016 to 2021, specialist housing schemes can be let at Social Rent. For any other Social Rent provision, it will be for Registered Providers to demonstrate through evidence that there are exceptional reasons why Social Rent provision should be provided, in preference to Affordable Rent.

1.5 Scheme administration

1.5.1 The Agency’s scheme administration requirements are set out in section 3 of the Programme Management chapter.

1.6 Right to Acquire

1.6.1 The Right to Acquire provisions of the Housing and Regeneration Act 2008 apply to all dwellings built or acquired for the social rented sector (including Affordable Rent) with public funding since 1 April 1997, unless exempted. It is a condition of grant funding that providers comply with this legislation. Further details of the Right to Acquire product including property and applicant eligibility, and the legislation can be found in the Right to Acquire chapter.

1.6.2 Section 181(2) of the Housing and Regeneration Act 2008 requires the Agency to notify grant recipients before giving grant whether schemes are to be regarded as having been publicly funded for Right to Acquire purposes. The Agency will meet this obligation through the delivery contract and by means of an IMS notification confirming to providers of Affordable Rent and Social Rent that schemes are treated as publicly funded for the purposes of the Right to Acquire. This notification is available for providers to print for each of their schemes in IMS.

2. Affordable Rent

2.1 General

2.1.1 This section describes the Agency’s requirements in relation to the rents to be charged on grant-funded Affordable Rent schemes.

2.2 Rent setting and valuations

2.2.1 The maximum rental level for Affordable Rent should be no more than 80% of gross market rent (inclusive of service charges). In assessing whether the rent is no more than 80% the individual characteristics of the property must be taken in to account, such as its location and size.

2.2.2 Providers should set rents in accordance with the requirements of the Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016 and regulations made under it, and should seek their own legal advice as to the applicability of the legislation where they consider it necessary to do so.

2.2.3 For both new supply and conversions providers will be required to assess the market rent (using the definition of the International Valuations Standard Committee as adopted by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) that the individual property would achieve and set the initial rent at up to 80% of that level (inclusive of service charges).

For further guidance please see below.

The Regulator has issued an explanatory note on Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) approved valuation methods which is contained in Appendix 3 of the Rent Standard Guidance.

Please note that this document contains information produced by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, which could be subject to change.

In particular it is worth noting that for valuation purposes the appropriate lease terms will normally reflect current practice (e.g. twelve-month fixed-term assured shorthold tenancy) in the market in which the property is situated, not the individual terms of the tenancy in question.

2.2.4 Supported housing, extra care housing and otherhousing for vulnerable and older people often includes a range of services to support the particular needs of the client group. For this type of property the market rent comparables (including service charges) should be based on similar levels and types of service provision available in that area. Where there are insufficient or no comparables for similar types of provision in the local area, valuers should be requested to identify comparables from other areas, or give their best view of the market rent (inclusive of service charges) that would be applicable in the location in which the property is situated or use an alternative valuation method, setting out their justification. Registered Providers should then set the initial rent at up to 80% of that level.

2.2.5 Exceptionally rents may exceed 80% of market levels in areas where the Affordable Rent would otherwise be lower than the target rent for the property. The target rent therefore constitutes a ‘floor’ for the rent to be charged. However providers will be required to document such decisions together with supporting evidence for audit purposes.

2.3 Rent reviews

2.3.1 Homes let on Affordable Rent terms will be subject to requirements of the Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016 and regulations made under it. For further information, please consult the legislation (taking legal advice where you feel it is appropriate to do so), the guidance published by DCLG, and the Regulatory Framework Requirements.

2.4 Subsequent tenancy renewals and re-lets

2.4.1 Registered Providers will be required to rebase the rent on each occasion that a new Affordable Rent tenancy is issued (or renewed) for a particular property; and ensure that the rent remains at no more than 80% of gross market rent (inclusive of service charges) as of the date the property is re-let – even if this means the new rent is lower than the rent previously charged.

3. Social Rent

3.1 General

3.1.1 This section describes the requirements in relation to rents to be charged on grant-funded Social Rent schemes.

3.2 Requirements

3.2.1 Rent policy is subject to the Regulator’s Rent and Tenancy standards and, social rent levels should be calculated according to a formula based on relative property values and relative local earnings.

3.2.2 Social rents are calculated using the formula and data set out in the Department for Communities and Local Government’s Guidance on Rent for Social Housing (for local authorities), and in The Regulatory Framework for Social Housing in England from 1 April 2015 - and the Rent Standard (including the Rent Standard Guidance) in The Regulatory Framework for Social Housing in England from 1 April 2015 for private registered providers.

3.2.3 For details on the calculation of the weekly rent providers should refer to these documents as appropriate.

3.2.4 For further information on rent setting, rent caps and guideline limits please refer to the Agency’s website.

4. Tenancy arrangements

4.1 General

4.1.1 This section describes the tenancy arrangements that Registered Providers are able to operate when providing Affordable Rent, and reflects the requirements of the Regulator’s Tenancy Standard.

4.2 Requirements

4.2.1 Therefore, Registered Providers are able to offer Affordable Rent on flexible tenancies; retaining the option to offer assured or secure tenancies if they wish to.

4.2.2 Affordable Rent tenancies may be either long term periodic assured or secure tenancies, or they may be for a fixed term. If fixed term they must be for a period of no less than five years (or two years in exceptional circumstances – see 1.3.4), but Registered Providers have the flexibility to offer longer tenancies, including assured or secure tenancies.

4.2.3 Registered Providers will be required to have regard to Local Housing Authorities’ strategic tenancy policies.

For further guidance please see below.

Section 150 of the Localism Act requires all Local Housing Authorities to produce a tenancy strategy. These strategies should set out the broad objectives to be taken in to consideration by individual social landlords in the area regarding their own policies on the grant and reissue of tenancies.

The requirement to have regard to local authority tenancy strategies only applies in relation to a Registered Provider’s policies on tenancy type and not to other aspects of a Registered Provider’s business (such as rent setting or conversions).

4.3 Ending a tenancy

4.3.1 Where, at the end of a fixed term tenancy, a Registered Provider decides not to issue a further Affordable Rent tenancy, they will be required to offer timely and reasonable advice and assistance to the existing tenants to help them find suitable alternative accommodation.

For further guidance please see below.

Registered Providers may wish to consider a range of ‘end of tenancy’ options depending on the needs of the household.

The Regulator’s Tenancy standard says that where Registered Providers choose to offer Affordable Rent they should offer reasonable advice and assistance to those tenants where that tenancy ends and landlords determine that a further tenancy will not be issued to them.

Where it would be affordable and sustainable for the tenant, one option might be to sell the Affordable Rent property to the tenant(s) on shared ownership terms to assist them in to Affordable Home Ownership. Whilst such a sale would be a voluntary sale on shared ownership terms, Registered Providers are encouraged to refer to the shared ownership chapter for further details of how the Agency’s shared ownership product works. In such cases the sales receipt, including the appropriate proportion of Agency funding (please see section 4 of the Grant Recovery chapter), will be expected to be reinvested in further new supply of affordable housing or repaid to the Agency.

4.3.2 When disposing of Affordable Rent property Registered Providers are reminded that they will be subject to the Regulator’s Consent to dispose regime.

4.4 Grant recovery

4.4.1 Disposal of Affordable Rent and Social Rent property on the open market, or voluntarily to a tenant on shared ownership terms is a ‘relevant event’ for grant recovery purposes. Registered Providers should credit the appropriate grant amount to their Recycled Capital Grant Fund in the normal way, and ring fence these amounts to be spent on further new supply of affordable housing.

4.4.2 For further information on grant recovery including relevant events, calculating the grant to be recovered, and Recycled Capital Grant Fund administration refer to the Grant Recovery chapter.

5. Reporting and audit requirements

5.1 General

5.1.1 Providers must maintain accurate and complete records both for reporting and audit purposes and this section sets out the Agency’s requirements.

5.1.2 For general requirements see the Programme Management chapter

5.1.3 All Affordable Rent and Social Rent lettings must be recorded on a Continuous Recording (CORE) lettings log.

5.2 Supporting Documentation

5.2.1 For details of the required supporting documentation please see the Programme Management chapter

6. Repair

6.1 General

6.1.1 The SOAHP aims to increase new supply and as such funding for works to existing affordable rental housing stock will be made only in the most exceptional circumstances. Please see guidance below for further information.

For example we have previously made funding available, for this purpose, to almshouse charities, to ensure that these homes remain in a standard that allows them to remain habitable, where the individual charities do not have access to resources to undertake the work.

6.2.1 The Agency will usually not to agree to allow the use of recycled grant for the funding of repairs. The Agency does not provide funding for works to local authority-owned property.

6.2 Existing housing stock

6.2.1 Works to existing rental stock consists of:

  • Major Repairs
  • Re-improvements

6.2.2 Major repairs

As a general rule the Agency expects Registered Providers to fund repairs to their existing stock through their business plans. However the Agency will in exceptional cases consider funding major repairs in respect of eligible properties (see section 6.5), which are essential for the property to remain habitable; and where the Registered Provider can demonstrate it has no access to resources of its own to undertake the work.

6.2.3 For guidance on deciding whether work is classed as major repairs please see guidance below.

Major repairs are repairs that do not fundamentally change the nature of the property in a way that would enable a landlord to charge a different rent.

Even if the tenant is required to be re-housed on an interim basis whilst the major repairs are completed; it is expected that the tenant would return to the property on the same tenancy terms.

6.2.4 Where a Registered Provider is able to demonstrate it cannot use its own resources, Recycled Capital Grant Fund, and is unable to afford to pay for the major repair by taking out a loan, the cost of the works may be covered by grant. However, any excessive or non-qualifying costs must be paid for by the provider. Please see sections 6.7 to 6.11 for details of eligible and ineligible works.

6.2.5 Re-improvements

Re-improvements are works to property in the provider’s ownership which was originally produced with public sector funding. The re-improvement work can be improvements or conversion, and be sufficient to justify an change in rent. If no rent change is justifiable, the work is likely to be classed as Major Repairs. Whilst re-improvements are works to a Registered Provider’s existing stock they are not classified as repairs. The requirements and criteria for re-improvements are detailed at Procurement and Scheme Issues 3.3.

6.3 Key features

6.3.1 Where the Agency does make an exception to consider funding major repairs the following characteristics will apply:

  • Fixed grant - Grant is only available to cover the amount that the provider has evidenced they cannot cover themselves. Once funding is agreed, the grant payable is fixed and will not be increased if costs subsequently go up

  • Payment - Grant is required to be claimed and then paid following practical completion. Where payment on completion would put a provider in severe financial difficulty, a limited facility to release payment in tranches may be available. The Agency will consider individual requests on a case by case basis

  • Single building contract - In certain circumstances a Registered Provider may undertake a range of repair and improvement activities under a single building contract. Where the Agency considers funding on an exceptional basis they may favourably consider applications from the Registered Provider for grant for the eligible works in such combined schemes where it is practicable and cost effective for the works to be carried out at the same time

  • Technical scrutiny - The Agency will scrutinise the proposed works to ensure that they:

    • are realistic
    • are reasonable
    • represent value for money

Depending on the degree of scrutiny at offer stage the Agency may require supporting documents to be submitted

  • Eligible properties - Not all properties are eligible for major repairs funding. Details of eligible and ineligible properties are described in sections 6.5 and 6.6 of this chapter. As any funding from the Agency is available only in exceptional circumstances, providers must account for and fund their own ‘major repairs’ provision for all of their properties within their business plans

  • Eligible works - Categories of work which the Agency may consider funding in exceptional circumstances are set out in section 6.7 of this chapter

  • Non-qualifying costs - Not all works and costs are eligible for grant funding, and these will be required to be funded by the Registered Provider. The term non-qualifying cost relates to any capital costs of ineligible works

6.4 Asset management

6.4.1 Registered Providers should deliver effectively managed resources as expected in the Regulator’s Governance and Financial Viability Standard. This will involve a business plan which covers:

  • The management of assets
  • Obtaining the finance required to maintain assets
  • An assessment of the risks to delivering the plan

Any queries should be referred to the Regulator.

6.5 Eligible properties

6.5.1 Should the Agency consider an exceptional case exists, except for those listed at paragraph 3.3, all rental properties are eligible for major repairs funding if they were funded under pre-1988 Housing Act procedures.

6.5.2 The above includes property funded under the pre-1988 Housing Act Supported Housing Procedures which were eligible for Special Needs Management Allowance/Supported Housing Management Grant and were funded by Housing Association Grant.

6.6 Ineligible properties

6.6.1 The following types of properties are ineligible for major repairs grant funding:

  • Temporary Social Housing schemes
  • Any property transferred from a public sector body to a Registered Provider on or after 1 April 1989
  • Any property owned by a local authority
  • Properties produced out of the following internal Registered Provider funds:
    • Disposal Proceeds Fund
    • Recycled Capital Grant Fund
  • All pilot mixed funding schemes approved in 1987/88 and 1988/89 including Challenge, Job Movers and Homeless Families schemes
  • Properties funded under the Tariff, Non-Tariff, and Cash Programme procedures (i.e. funded after April 1989), EXCEPT supported housing schemes which also received a Special Needs Management Allowance/Supported Housing Management Grant approval under the Special Needs Funding and Supported Housing Arrangements introduced in April 1991 and 1995
  • All grant-funded Affordable Home Ownership properties
  • Properties developed by the Registered Provider without any form of public subsidy (such as Business Expansion Schemes (please see definition in the Glossary), market rent schemes, privately-funded home ownership schemes) unless the properties are let at Affordable Rent or Social Rent

6.6.2 Large Scale Voluntary Transfer landlords that received stock transfers prior to 31 March 1996 are not eligible in principle to receive major repairs funding regardless of when these properties were originally funded.

6.7 Major Repairs - Eligible Works

6.7.1 Should the Agency consider in exceptional cases that it would be appropriate to fund major repairs the following sections define the types of work that would normally be acceptable.

6.7.2 The repaired or replaced systems and components paid for by major repairs funding must have a (remaining) life of at least 15 years, once works are completed.

6.8 Establishing eligibility

6.8.1 It is not possible to give a definitive list of works that might qualify for funding, and Registered Providers will be required to contact the relevant operating area of the Agency to discuss the likelihood of whether their proposed works might be eligible for funding. For an example of the difficulty in providing clear-cut rules please see below.

An example of where the same work may and may not qualify for major repair funding is the replacement of kitchen base units.

The routine replacement of units, for example following wear and tear is considered routine or cyclical maintenance and therefore not eligible for major repair funding.

However, where those units have been damaged beyond reasonable repair and are required to be replaced as a consequence of a failed damp proof course (which in itself is eligible for major repair funding), the cost of their replacement could qualify for funding.

Therefore, the main ‘grey area’ to be considered is whether the need for the repairs arises as a direct consequence of something else rather than from routine maintenance needs.

6.9 Categories of work

6.9.1 For guidance on what type of works the Agency considers essential for the property to remain habitable please see below.

Major repairs works can be:

  • Major works arising from structural or environmental deterioration or
  • Replacement or repairs to services or features or
  • Works arising from legislative changes occurring after completion of the original development or rehabilitation work

In some instances tenants will need to be temporarily re-housed to enable major repairs to be carried out. The necessity to vacate properties can indicate the urgency or priority of the works.

6.9.1 The standards and types of major repair works are:

  • Structural works
  • Secondary elements
  • Site works
  • Service installations
  • Investigations
  • Consequential works
  • Emergency repairs

Structural works

These are defined as works essential to safeguard the basic functions of stability and weather resistance in the main structural elements of a dwelling i.e. in floors, walls and roofs. Examples of major repairs works falling within this category include:

  • Underpinning and reconstruction of foundations
  • Rebuilding load-bearing walls including retaining walls
  • Damp proof course works and associated reduction of external ground levels
  • Treatment of wet or dry rot or insect attack
  • Tanking or lining to prevent moisture penetration
  • Lining and insulation in cases of severe condensation
  • Replacing roof/floor timbers, roof decks and covering
  • Re-pointing, re-rendering and re-cladding external load-bearing walls

Secondary elements

Extensive works (but not cyclical maintenance) to secondary elements of the structural envelope of a dwelling such as:

  • Stairs
  • Non-load-bearing walls
  • Balconies
  • Windows and external doors
  • Chimneys
  • Parapets and gutters

But excluding:

  • Internal doors
  • Fittings
  • Finishes and equipment

These works must be essential to preserve the weather resistance of the building or the security of the tenants and/or their possessions.

Site works

Site works around the dwelling or dwellings that are essential to the safety, security and protection of the tenants. Examples of works in this category include:

  • Replacement or reconstruction of unstable boundary walls, fences and retaining walls
  • Replacement or reconstruction of steps, paving, hard standings, un-adopted footpaths and roads damaged by subsidence or collapse
  • Removal of trees affected by disease or storm
  • Demolition of unsafe out-buildings including garages

Service installations

These are works to building services that have reached the end of their useful life such that the basic amenities of sanitation, health and safety in a dwelling could be seriously impaired. Works in this category comprise renewal of installations including:

  • Gas, water and electricity supplies
  • Drainage above and below ground
  • Heating and ventilation (in cases of severe condensation renewal or provision of heating, ventilation, dehumidification and insulation in accordance with the BRE Digest 297 (formerly Building Research Establishment) will be eligible)
  • Lifts; fire alarm, warden call, security and emergency lighting systems
  • External windows and doors replacement
  • Certain types of external works e.g. resurfacing roads and paved areas

Investigations

Works required to investigate, report, expose and prepare for any of the above categories of major repairs works can be approved by the Agency. This category of works also includes preventive treatments to areas under threat as a result of defects undergoing major repairs.

Consequential and other works

Works that are consequential upon major repairs works in the above categories. This includes works of reinstatement or making good to finishes and fittings (including decorations, internal doors and equipment) unavoidably damaged to an extent that has significant adverse effect on their function or longevity in the course of, or in connection with, major repairs works.

Health and safety

From time to time suspected health hazards arise from particular materials used in building. In addition, changing circumstances may lead to measures being required to address personal safety concerns of tenants within the building. Proposals appropriate to dealing with such cases as major repairs can only be assessed on their merits. Registered Providers should consult their relevant operating area in the first instance.

Damage not covered by insurance claims

In exceptionally inclement weather conditions, such as flood or storm, buildings can suffer unusual damage. Where such risks are uninsurable, the operating area of the Agency will give consideration to using major repairs funds in cases requiring extensive renewal.

Emergency major repairs

In some circumstances substantial repairs will be necessary because of extensive vandalism or damage or neglect by tenants. Where the costs of such works are not recoverable through insurance or charges to the tenant they can be considered by the Agency for major repairs funding. In such cases the Agency will need to be satisfied that the Registered Provider has taken all reasonable steps to secure the property and/or to recover any costs.

Emergency major repairs are works carried out as a matter of the utmost urgency, such as on receipt of a Dangerous Structure Notice from a local authority or health authority. As with other major repairs, providers are expected to explore all aspects of liability. Emergency work must be strictly limited to what is immediately necessary, and where possible, permanent reinstatement must be carried out as a separate scheme.

Where possible, the Agency will actively assist with emergencies by giving in principle, oral approval, prior to full approval of the scheme.

6.10 Additional major repair provision

6.10.1 Previously referred to as minor miscellaneous works, the following are also classified as major repairs where such work to Registered Providers’ properties, is required to meet statutory requirements and address health hazards.

6.10.2 The following are examples of the types of works that in exceptional circumstances may be eligible for funding

  • Asbestos removal
  • Fire Precautions
  • Dealing with lead in drinking water
  • Dealing with radon

6.10.3 Asbestos works

Funding can be paid to cover the cost of the treatment of hazards arising from asbestos in building materials.

6.10.4 For guidance on how the Agency will appraise the proposed works costs, please see below. This will enable schemes to be submitted and evaluated under a common set of criteria.

The list below contains information on asbestos used in the manufacture of domestic consumer products such as kitchen appliances and heating equipment and makes a number of key points which must be satisfied:

  • Dangers from asbestos in buildings are likely to arise only when asbestos is damaged, either accidentally or during maintenance or repair
  • In general, undisturbed materials in good condition present little risk but once the presence of asbestos material has been determined it is important to distinguish the type of asbestos and the potential for fibre release
  • Asbestos materials which are sound, undamaged and not releasing dust must be undisturbed. A system of management must be introduced involving regular inspection and labelling
  • Frequently the most appropriate action will be to leave the material in place and to seal or encapsulate it
  • When it is not possible to seal an asbestos material effectively and it is likely to release dust, the Registered Provider must seriously consider removing it completely
  • It will generally be more cost effective to undertake work on asbestos as part of a programme of general refurbishment or maintenance than to undertake such work separately. Any programme of work on asbestos must therefore take account of other planned work and factors such as the availability of suitable contractors and temporary re-accommodation of tenants whilst work is being carried out. It is important that there must be adequate liaison with tenants.

Asbestos removal must be performed only by licensed contractors. Demolition involving any form of asbestos is subject to relevant health and safety legislation. Asbestos waste is classified as a controlled waste to be disposed of only at licensed sites.

6.10.5 Fire precautions

These are works recommended by the relevant Fire Authority to upgrade existing fire precautionary measures, or install new services as defined by the Fire Authority. Registered Providers should follow the professional advice of the Fire Authority, although they are not strictly obliged in statute to do so.

6.10.6 Lead in drinking water

Funding can be provided to cover the costs of replacing existing, or installing new pipe work due to the presence of lead in drinking water. In certain circumstances, the only solution to this problem will be to carry out replacement works of varying degrees. In many cases, attendant health risks associated with lead will be of paramount importance. Eligible works include the replacement, installation or re-routing of pipe work.

6.10.7 For further information please refer to the Drinking Water Inspectorate’s (DWI’s) A-Z search facility.

6.10.8 Radon

What is Radon?

Radon is a natural radioactive gas that results from the decay of small amounts of uranium present in soils and rocks. Where the gas seeps out of the ground in to the open air there is little or no danger, but where it escapes from underlying soil in to dwellings a build up of radon could become a health hazard. Radon has no taste, smell or colour. Special equipment is needed for detection.

For detailed information prior to any action Registered Providers are advised to seek guidance from Public Health England. Public Health England provides advice on matters of radiation protection and has carried out various surveys in order to monitor levels of Radon. Further advice can also be found on the BRE website.

6.10.9 The cost of remedial works to existing dwellings contaminated by Radon will be eligible for funding subject to the Registered Provider obtaining a survey report from the Health Protection Agency indicating that the remedial works are necessary. Only survey reports from the Health Protection Area will be considered for eligibility purposes. Where the Health Protection Area considers that a radon survey of an existing dwelling is unwarranted, funding will not be available.

6.11 Ineligible works

6.11.1 The following are not eligible for major repairs funding:

  • Re-improvements (see Procurement and Scheme Issues 3.3 for guidance on funding for re-improvements)
  • Day to day maintenance
  • Cyclical maintenance
  • Aids and adaptations
  • Works required because of the provider’s neglect and inefficiency