When will Housing Bill provisions become law?

Many members are enquiring about when the provisions set out in the Housing Bill (published by the government in March) will become law.

SAL met with the Scottish Government yesterday to discuss our concerns about the Bill, as set out in our response to the parliament’s call for views. During the meeting government officials shared with us their expectations on timescales for the various stages of the Bill and when the measures may come into force if enacted by parliament. The likely timescales are as follows:

Bill stage 1 (during which MSPs decide whether parliament agrees with the general principles of the Bill) – complete by end October/early November 2024

Bill stage 2 (during which MSPs can propose and vote on amendments to the Bill) – complete by early 2025

Bill stage 3 (during which final amendments are proposed/considered and parliament votes on whether the Bill should become law) – complete by late spring 2025

Bill receives Royal Assent (becomes an Act of parliament) – summer 2025

Secondary legislation to set out the finer details of how the measures will operate then needs to be published and considered by parliament – this is likely to take place during 2025-2026.

The earliest date for provisions to come into force in the private rented sector is likely to be some time during 2027-2028. Different provisions are likely to come into force at different times. Some rent control zones could be designed in 2027 if local authorities have data to support their introduction. Provisions on pets/personalisation may take longer as they are expected to require more consultations on secondary legislation/guidance – so may not come into force until 2028.

The above timescales are just best guesses at this stage and there are many factors which could affect the progress of the legislation. It should also be recognised that at any stage of the Bill’s progress through parliament amendments can be made to the provisions in the Bill, with measures potentially being added, removed or significantly altered.

SAL will keep members updated with the progress of the Bill, so keep an eye on our enews updates.

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