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A new regime for building safety

29 April 2022

Another date for the diary!  The Building Safety Bill has now gained Royal Assent and becomes law.

The Bill has been a long time coming, now five years on from the Grenfell tragedy, and whilst it will be welcome news to many, it remains a concern for others.  Bearing in mind the significant implications this will have for many current building owners, and indeed the supply chain within the construction industry (now introducing an increased retrospective limitation period amongst other serious changes), the Bill has been pushed through both Houses to ensure a swift response, following criticism levied at the Government.   The news also comes just over a week after the Building Safety Levy was confirmed to have achieved its aim.

The Bill will do great things moving forward, with a proper focus on the 'golden thread' of contracting through the gateways, with the ultimate goal of ensuring build quality and building safety becomes paramount.  The uplift in cost will be borne by developers, and in theory should drive innovation, but not at the cost of safety!  

Historic cladding and building safety issues now fall at the feet of landlords and developers, and not leaseholders.  This 'waterfall' of obligations will definitely cause a splash for many property owners, who have inherited or purchased defective buildings, with no one left to pursue.  This could cause years of strife and litigious dealings in overcoming the historic deficiencies in build quality, which are often not the cause or fault of those now being forced to pick up the tab.

This new legislation will be a cause for celebration for many, however, professionals in the industry must now quickly get up to speed with their new duties.

Last year, DWF published a report - 'A new regime - the aftermath of Grenfell' – that explored some of the longstanding issues within the UK's construction industry which led to the cladding crisis and the impact of the proposed Building Safety Bill. The report was informed by discussions with leaders and professionals within the construction and insurance sectors.
For our report and findings, click here

If you would like to find out more about the impact of the new Building Safety Bill and related issues for the industry, please contact David McNeice.

Further Reading