Housing Associations

Experience in your sector

The environment in which housing associations (registered providers) operate is undergoing seismic changes with the state retreating from subsidising its activities and devolution meaning greater freedom in decision-making. Against this backdrop, efficiency and effectiveness remain high on the agenda.

If registered providers are to continue to deliver their mission, the market view is that they must take an increasingly commercial approach.

To provide genuinely affordable housing for rent or low-cost home ownership, registered providers need to generate their own cross-subsidy through property sales. In this regard, the sector’s risk is similar to the market risks faced by housebuilders.

Many registered providers are considering their operating model going forward – either as an individual entity or in conjunction with others through shared services, partnership or merger.

The importance of good governance

As the housing association sector transitions from the previous consents regime to the new devolved notification and registration environment, governance is more important than ever before. With greater freedom, each registered provider needs to be operating effectively, with full transparency, and good governance needs to be seen to be top of the organisation’s agenda.

It is vital to put a system of checks and balances in place to prevent conflicts of interest between service users and ensure a diverse board composition to support effective decision-making.

Our company secretary services include:

  • Ensuring Compliance with the National Housing Federation (NHF) Code of Governance
  • Updating Rules for registered providers, using the latest version of the NHF model rules
  • Filing of AR 30 return and annual accounts with the FCA
  • AGM support – Convening an AGM, ensuring the required notice period is given and minutes taken
  • Meeting management – Arranging meetings and maintaining a record of the minutes
  • Submitting required information to the FCA
  • Keeping statutory registers up-to-date
  • Drawing up procedures to ensure good governance and ensuring these are followed
  • Compliance services – in conjunction with the board, ensuring compliance with applicable legislation such as health & safety and employment laws and the GDPR

Bridgehouse Company Secretaries has extensive experience working with housing associations/registered providers on a wide range of governance issues.

We can support board chairs in managing their boards, conduct board effectiveness reviews and help housing associations implement policies and procedures that result in stronger board performance in a rapidly changing marketplace.

Talk to us to find out more.