What is the Building Safety Act and what impact could it have?

On April 28th 2022, the Building Safety Bill received Royal Assent after becoming an Act of Parliament. Now passed into law, it’s known as the Building Safety Act and has a big impact on the construction industry.

What is the Building Safety Act 2022?

Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick described the Building Safety Bill as the ‘biggest improvements to building safety in nearly 40 years. In a nutshell, it is a set of new, strict rules for the construction of residential buildings. It comes in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy and is written to ensure that building safety is a priority for the lifetime of a residential building.

The Act gives advice to everyone involved in a building’s construction including:

  • Local regulators
  • Landlords and building owners
  • The design and construction industry
  • Occupants

The three gateways

To ensure that every stage of construction is carefully considered and the right information is available at every stage, the Act includes three ‘gateways’:

Gateway one

Covers the planning stage, drawing upon current planning permission processes. Any planning applications must show that fire safety requirements are included.

Gateway two

This stage requires that the Building Safety Regulator (established by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)) is happy with the design. Constructors will be asked to prove that the future building will comply with regulations.

Gateway three

Once the building is finished, the building control body will determine whether it has been built in line with Building Regulations. The Building Safety Regulator will issue a certificate of completion once they are happy.

Post-completion safety

The impact of the Building Safety Act extends beyond the final brick being laid and there are now new roles for safety management once a building is occupied. An accountable person; building safety manager; and special measures manager together, amongst other roles, ensure that a building maintains its compliance with safety regulations, manage risks and ensure complaints are dealt with properly.

What’s new for surveyors and building surveys?

At Trinity Rose, we keep at the forefront of any changes to legislation and the Building Safety Act 2022 means a few changes for our industry.

Any surveyors working on high risk buildings must demonstrate a higher level of competence. There will be 3rd party oversight of any new accreditations and the new Building Safety Regulator will oversee surveyors and firms.

Is the Act good or bad?

The new rules are undoubtedly good news for homeowners and residents. Homes, hospitals and care homes will be safer buildings and people will have more powers and protections.

For designers and constructors, there will be clear instructions on how to build safe buildings and tough penalties for rule-breakers. Going beyond construction, the Act sets out how buildings should be maintained and made safe, with specific people put in charge of ensuring compliance.

Get in touch

At Trinity Rose, our team of experienced Chartered Surveyors carry out surveys to ensure buildings’ safety on a daily basis. We’re thrilled about The Building Safety Act as it will mean a new standard of safety for the building industry as a whole.

If you’d like to arrange a building survey or have got any questions at all, please get in touch. We’ll be happy to help.