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New building regulations come into force on 6 April 2024, implementing the requirements of the Building Safety Act 2022. Here's what you need to know to prepare for the changes. In August 2023, the Government published secondary legislation importing the new regulatory regime for building and design work anticipated by the Building Safety Act 2022. A six-month transitional period was introduced to allow the industry to catch-up with the changes and to exempt some existing projects from the scope of the new regime.

Six months is a short time in the construction industry, and the transitional arrangements will expire on 6 April 2024. Social landlords undertaking new building works or completing existing projects need to prepare themselves for the new regime, including whether the transitional provisions apply to their projects.

Gateways regime for Higher-Risk Buildings 

Social landlords commissioning new Higher-Risk Buildings or undertaking major works to existing Higher-Risk Buildings will be required to comply with the new three stage building control approval ("Gateways") regime set out in the Building (Higher-Risk Buildings Procedures) (England) Regulations 2023 (the Gateways Regulations). 

To be exempted from the Gateways regime, all of the following conditions need to apply:

  • prior to 1 October 2023, the person carrying out the works has lodged an Initial Notice under s47 of the Building Act 1984 with the local authority (and/or lodged full plans with the authority); and
  • the Notice remains in force as at 6 April 2024 and has not expired or been cancelled; and
  • the works must be "sufficiently progressed" before 6 April 2024; and
  • the local authority must be notified that the works have sufficiently progressed within five working days of that milestone, and in any event before 6 April 2024.

For new Higher-Risk Buildings, the works are "sufficiently progressed" when the pouring of concrete for that building has started in relation to the permanent placement foundations or piling. For in-scope works to existing Higher-Risk Buildings, sufficient progression is achieved when the relevant works have started. 

In addition, where a building project has yet reached practical completion before 6 April 2024, the local authority must also be notified of practical completion being achieved to allow the project to be excluded from the Gateways regime.

Higher-Risk Building projects not meeting these conditions will become subject to the Gateways regime, and the Building Safety Regulator will become the building control authority for those buildings.


The Building Regulations etc. (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2023 (the Competency Regulations) establish new Dutyholder roles in respect of most building work and design work covered by the Building Regulations 2010 and commencing after 1 October 2023. 

The Dutyholders roles replicate the existing CDM Regulations roles of Client, Principal Designers, Principal Contractors, Designers and Contractors, though these are additional to the CDM obligations. Social landlord clients and anyone appointing others to undertake building work and design work must ensure that their appointees are "competent" within the meaning of the Competency Regulations.

The Competency Regulations also have their own six-month transitional period. In respect of non-Higher-Risk Building work, the new requirements do not apply to building work where:

  • a building notice has been given to a local authority or where full plans were deposited with the local authority in relation to the work, in either case before 1 October 2023; or 
  • the work started before 1 October 2023.

Building control approval in respect of new building work will now lapse automatically where the work has not commenced within three years of the date of the initial approval. Where this occurs, or where building works have not started by 6 April 2024, the Competency Regulations will apply to those works. Special rules apply for "complex projects" within the meaning of the Regulations.

Getting prepared

Given the impending deadline for the new regulatory regime to take effect, we recommend that social housing employers and developers assess their current building projects to ensure the relevant requirements are met.