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Home Tradesman Insights Exploring the Building Safety Act: Enhanced Control for High-Risk Buildings and Revamped Regulations for All Structures

Exploring the Building Safety Act: Enhanced Control for High-Risk Buildings and Revamped Regulations for All Structures

The construction industry is preparing for major changes with the introduction of new building safety standards. The government recently published its response to the consultation on implementing the new regulations, which use powers set out in the Building Safety Act (2022).

An enhanced building control regime will be introduced for high-risk buildings (HRBs), which will come into force on 1 October 2023. Under the new regime, HRB projects will face greater oversight from the Building Safety Regulator (BSR) throughout design and construction. Some general changes to Building Regulations for all structures will also be introduced.

New Regime for HRBs

The proposed building control regime for HRBs broadly covers residential buildings, hospitals and care homes over 18 metres or 7 storeys tall. It details new building control approval processes for construction, design changes, mandatory occurrence reporting and more.

One notable change is that applications for building control approval will take up to 12 weeks, while completion certificates may take 8 weeks – and a non-response from the BSR will not be considered an approval by default.

For buildings already underway, transitional arrangements will allow construction to proceed under the existing regime. However, these will be subject to strict conditions. An initial notice must be accepted or full plans deposited by 1st October 2023, and the works must be ‘sufficiently progressed’ by 6 April 2024.

Wider Reforms

The new Building Regulations amendments will also introduce wider reforms for all buildings – not just HRBs. For example, there will be new standardised definitions for ‘commencement of work’, with Building Control approval automatically lapsing after three years for projects that do not meet these definitions.

Overall, the new amendments brought forth by the Building Safety Act (2022) represent a significant shake-up for the built environment sector. With new duties and tighter oversight, construction firms must ensure they understand the changing regulations to avoid delays or extra costs.

More details on the new regime are still to come, with full guidance due to be published once the regulations are brought before Parliament.

Tradesman Talk

How do you think the proposed regulations will impact your business? Do you have any concerns about meeting the new requirements for high-risk builds as a professional builder? What challenges do you foresee?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below, and share this story by clicking the social links.

Until next time, make sure it’s Tradesman Saver.

Stephanie Lowndes

Stephanie is a Digital Marketing Masters Graduate with extensive Customer Service experience gained in the retail and hospitality sectors. Stephanie is currently a Senior Marketing Executive at Tradesman Saver.

All articles by Stephanie Lowndes

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