The House of Commons Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee has today published a follow-up report on the remediation of fire safety defects in the external cladding of high risk residential buildings. 

The report concludes that the Government's existing £5.1billion Building Safety Fund is insufficient to address the true cost of remediating fire safety defects in high risk residential buildings (which the Select Committee estimates to be in the region of £15billion) and raises concerns over the allocation of funding which the Select Committee considers risks the safety of the residents living in such buildings. 

The Select Committee has called for the Government to, amongst other things:

  •  move away from the current height and product-based approach used in the allocation of funding and instead take a holistic, risk- and evidence-based approach that prioritises occupants who are most at risk;
  • establish a Comprehensive Building Safety Fund, to be fully funded by the Government and the construction industry, that:
    • applies to all high-risk buildings of any height and irrespective of tenure;
    • covers all fire safety defects, including non-cladding fire safety defects, and all associated costs; and
    • is accessible to social housing providers, in addition to the private sector.
  • abolish the proposed loan scheme for leaseholders to pay for cladding remediation works on buildings between 11metres and 18metres high. The Select Committee has reiterated its call on the Government to re-establish the principle that leaseholders should not pay anything towards the cost of remediating historical building safety defects. The Select Committee notes that the Government appears to be prioritising certainty for lenders above fairness for leaseholders.