Impact Housing Association

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Impact Housing Association addresses HCA regulatory downgrade issues

Social housing regulator, the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), has carried out an in-depth assessment of the governance and viability of Impact Housing Association (Impact). The HCA regulatory judgement has downgraded Impact to ‘non-compliant G3/V3 grading’, which means they have serious regulatory concerns. Impact is working closely with the HCA to address the issues identified in their final assessment.

The HCA Regulatory Judgement, published today, says: “The Impact board has responded positively and acknowledged the regulator’s concerns.  It is working with the regulator to ensure it has the capacity and capability, and in conjunction with external advisers, the support to make the changes required to ensure its long term viability and to address the governance and financial viability issues identified in this regulatory judgement.”

Chair of Impact Housing Association, Mark Costello said “Whilst the report is disappointing, the board and Management Team are already working towards improving our position. The report reflects the situation at the assessment which commenced in December. Since then, and in advance of the judgement publication, we have been working on an action plan to make changes that are right for our organisation.”

In the judgement report, the regulators criticise the level of effectiveness and foresight in governance. They are also concerned about Impact’s medium-term financial robustness, particularly their ability to deal with adverse changes in risk levels. There has been no criticism of Impact’s operational service delivery.

Commenting, Mark Costello said “In terms of financial viability, the HCA want to see a business plan that has a strengthened ability to cope with a range, or combination of risks crystallising. In response to market pressures and other issues facing all community housing associations, we had already reviewed the structure of the organisation and begun to implement changes that would strengthen our financial position. Savings have already been made and we are working to develop a business plan which responds to mitigate any future financial risks. The scale of flooding to our properties in 2015 significantly affected our operating costs and the threat of a similar event increases our future financial risk.

“In terms of governance, a number of changes have been made. Mike Muir, Chief Executive and Board member has stepped down early in anticipation of his retirement. An Interim Leader with the skills to help us through this transition is being appointed to support the Board and the Management Team through the necessary changes. We anticipate being able to announce this appointment in the next few days. We will also be recruiting new board members who can help us deliver change and create a strong board for our future.

“Our recovery team includes board and Management Team members, supported by external consultants who can help us accelerate the changes we need to make to strengthen our position. We are working closely with the HCA investigation and enforcement team to satisfy them that we have the skills and robustness to regain compliance.

“Finally, I am pleased that our operational service delivery was not criticised in the report and I am sure that the other board members, Management Team and everyone else on the staff will be working hard to ensure that our services to our tenants and residents are maintained throughout this period.”

The HCA regulatory judgement link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/fil...

Media enquiries: If you require further information, please contact Tracey Errington on 07799 640 290 or email tracey@marketsense.net

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