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Govt to consult on single housing ombudsman

7 December 2017

The government is to consult on creating a single ombudsman that will cover both the social and private housing sectors.

Speaking yesterday, communities secretary Sajid Javid expressed his frustration and disappointment in the current system and announced plans to look at the creation of a single body in the new year. This new ombudsman could also cover new build homes, he said.

Currently there are four organisations that deal with housing complaints: the Housing Ombudsman, the Property Ombudsman, Ombudsman Services: Property, and the Property Redress Scheme.

Javid said: “Now I believe the time is right to go further, to look at what can be done to improve the means of securing redress right across the housing sector.

“One of the options to do that is to create a new Housing Ombudsman. A single, transparent and accountable body with a remit that covers the whole of the housing sector – including both private and social landlords and the providers of new-build homes.

“Research in other sectors has shown that redress works more efficiently for consumers when there’s a single ombudsman in place. So, in the new year, we’re going to consult on this and see whether it’s right for the housing sector too.”

He stated he wanted to act because the present system had “all kinds of issues and inconsistencies” with a “confusing number of schemes in place and gaps in protection”.

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