The Building Safety Act 2022 came into force on 28th June 2022. This gives legal protection to leaseholders who are facing a financial burden to remedy “life-critical fire-safety” defects on buildings in excess of 11 metres tall, or with at least 5 storeys.
According to the governments press release, “45 of the UK’s biggest homebuilders have agreed to fix on all buildings 11 metres+, where they have played a role in developing or refurbishing in the last 30 years”
“Where freeholders or owners of buildings over 18m with cladding-related issues, do not have clear plans to address these issues, they must have full assessments ready to submit to the Building Safety Fund, which will re-open for new applications shortly, helping to ensure applications can be handled in good time, reducing the disruption and stress to leaseholders.”
The government publication goes onto say – “Qualifying leaseholders (those living in their own homes, or with up to 3 UK properties in total) will be protected, in full, from the costs associated with the remediation of unsafe cladding. They will also have robust and far-reaching protections from the costs associated with non-cladding defects, including interim measures like waking watches”
The Building Safety Act 2022 also includes items on improving building standards, and in their own words, “restoring common sense”.
A new Building Safety Regulator has been set up by the Health & Safety Executive, which will be able to enforce safety measures, and measure the performance of future high rise buildings within England.
The Office for Product Safety and Standards has also launched a National Regulator for Construction Products, which will enforce better standards on manufacturers of construction materials, with an emphasis on recognising and removing unsafe materials from sale, and taking action with those that created them.