Local authority housing


Housing is higher up the political agenda than it has been for years and the chronic shortage of homes is well documented.

Local authorities are seeing increasing numbers of homelessness cases whilst at the same time facing new obligations relating to homelessness prevention. Budgets are coming under sustained pressures and the requirement for self-sufficiency is making local authorities reconsider the way in which they provide services and generate revenues.    

The delivery of new affordable homes by local authorities has been greatly aided by the revocation of the housing revenue account (HRA) borrowing cap and we are potentially on the cusp of the delivery of a new generation of council homes at significant scale. At the same time local authorities will continue to work collaboratively with housing associations and others to ensure effective and efficient use of land and grant whilst also supporting local housing companies to deliver a range of different tenures.

We are the market leading law firm in social housing; and the market leading law firm in local authority advice. Combining these disciplines gives us an unsurpassed track record of local authority housing advice.

We advise on the full range of housing issues encountered by local authorities from housing management issues and policy preparation through to complex joint venturing with institutional investors to produce new supply outside (or inside) the HRA. We have advised on the formation of local authority owned housing companies and also regularly advise arm’s length management companies and tenant management organisations on their governance and delivery. Our expertise span from advice on community led housing solutions right through to advice on grant funding requirements with Homes England, The Greater London Authority and the combined authorities.

Our team includes a number of former senior in-house local authority lawyers who bring a depth of experience and understanding of the way local authorities work and the pressures that the in-house team in particular can face. Our work has included advising on many technical aspects of the HRA and the “rules” which underpin it including in relation to Minimum Revenue Provision, the Capital Finance and Accounting Regulations and the interpretation of the Right to Buy 1-4-1 Retention Agreement.

In brief

  • Work at the cutting edge of local authority housing initiatives
  • Market leading advice in social housing and local government
  • Significant expertise in joint ventures from straightforward contractual to multi party
  • Have worked with arm’s length management companies since their inception
  • Advise on the formation of and delivery by local authority housing companies
  • Advise authorities on the terms of Homes England, Greater London Authority and combined authority grant funding requirements
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