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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S6W-06895
Asked by: Paul McLennan, East Lothian, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 2 March 2022


To ask the Scottish Government whether the provisions in the UK Building Safety Bill that apply to Scotland will be enacted through a statutory instrument in the Scottish Parliament, and, if so, what it anticipates the potential impact will be on the built environment in Scotland.

Current status: Answered by Shona Robison on 15 March 2022


The UK Building Safety Bill introduces fundamental changes to the Building and Fire Safety regime for high rise buildings in England. Part five of the Bill includes provision for a New Homes Ombudsman scheme, the aim of which is to drive up standards in housebuilding and to independently resolve disputes between developers and purchasers where there is an issue concerning the quality of a new-build home.

The provisions would confer a regulation making power on Scottish Ministers to be able to add an additional descriptor of developers who would be required to join the scheme. Other aspects of the scheme are to be established by the Secretary of State either administratively or by regulations. The provisions require that Scottish Ministers are consulted on the main aspects of the scheme before they are taken forward, in order to ensure it is tailored to suit Scottish needs, culture and practice.

Whilst housing is a devolved matter, reservations apply to consumer protection and there may be matters which cannot be entirely addressed in a Scottish system. The Scottish Government wants to ensure that protections offered to buyers of new-build homes in Scotland can also take account of relevant consumer protection requirements.

The extension of the New Homes Ombudsman scheme to Scotland is subject to the approval of the Scottish Parliament.