This article intends to give a summary of the registration requirement of high-risk buildings under the Building Safety Act 2022 (the Act) as they apply to you if you are the owner, and/or landlord of a building.
I own or manage a building, why am I having to do this?
In the wake of the Grenfell Tower fire tragedy, the Act introduces a raft of new reforms for landlords and developers to improve fire safety in residential buildings.
One such reform is the introduction of a new government body, known as the Building Safety Regulator (or BSR).
The BSR will be in charge of overseeing the safety standards of your building, as well as setting out possible methods of improving those safety standards and ensuring any recommendations are complied with. Registration is required to ensure the BSR has the means to monitor the safety of your building.
Does my building apply?
There are 2 criteria for your building to fall into the definition under the Act that will require you to register –
- Your building has to be at least 18m in height or at least 7 storeys. And
- It must contain at least 2 residential units.
What responsibilities will I have?
If your building applies, “accountable persons” must be designated for it. This will be any organisation or individual who owns, or is responsible for, repairing its common residential parts.
Examples of an “accountable person” can include a freeholder, landlord or management company.
Where there is more than 1 party, a Principal Accountable Person (or PAP) needs to be designated. This designation should rest with the party who either owns, or is primarily responsible for, looking after your building’s structure.
As a PAP, you will be responsible for the following duties, in summary –
- Managing building safety and ensuring compliance with legislation, most predominantly on fire safety and structural issues;
- Maintaining reports and assessments on any such issues, with action points for possible improvements; and
- Applying for a building safety assessment (essentially a “sign off”) from the BSR, to demonstrate compliance with the above 2 duties.
When you receive their sign off, it should be displayed in a noticeable position in your building.
What do I need to include with my application?
Your application needs to have the following information about your building–
- The names of any “accountable persons” and the PAP (with a single person identified as its definitive point of contact)
- Number of storeys and residential units
- Year of completion of the build
- A copy of the building control certificate
- Any pertinent structural and safety information including-
- Any building work carried out since original build
- The building’s use
- The external wall material
- Evacuation routes
- Fire equipment, such as hoses, alarms and extinguishers
- Fire risk assessment recommendations
What are the consequences of not registering?
Failure to register by 30 September 2023 will constitute a criminal offence, so it is crucial you submit the relevant information as soon as possible.
Sanction for non-registration can include an unlimited fine and up to two years’ imprisonment.
To discuss any of the points raised in this article, please contact Josh Fraser, or fill in the below form.