Decent Homes Standard
What is the DHS?
The Decent Homes Standard (DHS) is a technical standard for social housing introduced by the government. The government set out a target in 2000 that it would "ensure that all social housing meets set standards of decency by 2010, the standard was updated in 2006 to take account of the Housing Act 2004, included the implementation of the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS).
The DHS also forms a key part of the Home Standard, one of the 5 Consumer Standards that apply to landlords of social housing.
Who does it effect?
The DHS is currently applicable to all properties within the social housing sector, it is one of the measures that social landlords are required to report on to the Regulator of Social Housing every year.
How does it work?
In order to be decent a home should be warm, weatherproof and have reasonably modern facilities. The Government has defined a dwelling that meets the 'Decent Homes' standard as one that:
- Meets the current statutory minimum standard for housing – i.e. it must be free of the most serious (category 1) hazards under the Housing, Health and Safety Rating System;
- Is in a reasonable state of repair;
- Has reasonably modern facilities and services; and
- Provides a reasonable degree of thermal comfort (i.e. it's not too cold).
Our surveyors gather information on the age and condition of components when they visit your home and we record this in our stock condition database so we know if any properties are failing to meet DHS.
What do we do about it?
We are doing special HHSRS surveys in our properties over the next year, to identify and resolve any category 1 hazards that we find.
We have an investment programme to replace the main components in a property including roofs, windows, doors, kitchens, bathrooms and boilers. Our stock condition database helps us know where the oldest components are, so we can plan to replace them before the condition gets too bad.
What should you do about it?
- Continue to report any problems in your home to us as they occur, so we can fix things before they get worse.
- Try to keep your home clean, tidy and well ventilated to help prevent some risks and identify others sooner.
- Give our surveyors, technical officers and operatives access to your home when they come to inspect or repair it.
- If you want to make any improvements to your home, please tell us about it first so we can make sure if meets all the requirements and update our records.