CIPFA and CIH help local authorities plan for life after the HRA subsidy system


The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) and the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) have joined forces to help housing authorities prepare for the new housing self-financing system beginning in April 2012.

England’s 171 stock owning authorities will need to get to grips with providing social housing under this new commercially biased framework, requiring new skills and knowledge.  Feedback from CIPFA and CIH customers highlighted the huge culture change from the heavily centralised and mechanised arrangements of the outgoing HRA subsidy system.

To get ahead, housing and finance professionals will need to re-model their HRA business plans in conjunction with their tenants; scenario plan likely debt amounts and costs; ensure appropriate governance arrangements are in place; work carefully through the debt pooling and depreciation implications; include the self-financing system in risk management analyses; look for knock-on impacts to and from the general fund; and determine likely treasury management costs, CIPFA and CIH says.

To help, CIPFA has collaborated with CIH to create a new online platform for local authority professionals preparing for the implementation of self-financing systems in April 2012.  It will help practitioners understand the changes and the implications for their organisations.  The platform went live on the 23 June 2011.

CIPFA Managing Director, Jon Graham said:

‘Feedback from housing authorities tells us many are still wrestling with how the housing self-financing system will operate in practice.  Our comprehensive library of information and guidance will help smooth the transition to the new system.’

CIH Director of Financial Policy, Steve Partridge, said:

‘The self-financing platform is an excellent way for local authorities to ensure they are up to speed with the task in hand and plug potential gaps in their knowledge. The website will offer a range of briefings and case studies as well as the opportunity to feedback latest developments and discuss issues as they arise’


CIPFA Press Office
T: 020 7543 5600

Jill Dwyer
CIH Press Office
T: 024 7685 1780

Notes to Editors:

1. From April 2012, there will be a new housing finance system in operation in England.  The current centralised housing subsidy arrangement will cease and authorities will need to financially manage all aspects of their landlord business themselves on a commercial basis, following a re-appropriation of national debt to better reflect their own current social housing stock.

2. HRA is a not-for-profit platform hosted jointly between the two main institutes with an interest in housing finance, CIPFA and the CIH.  By working together, CIPFA and the CIH have provided a one-stop shop facility, which includes all of the information currently held in the public domain, in one location.  Benefits of membership to the platform include:

Limitless access by anyone working in your Authority to this site
Instant access to both Institutes’ Publications, Documents and Guidance on HRA Self Financing – on one site
Regular Briefings on key issues related to HRA Self Financing, including Business Planning; Asset Management; Treasury Management and Technical Accounting
Regular Webinars – both pre-recorded and ‘live’ where you can hear Industry experts give advice and guidance to support your organisation in preparing for Self Financing
Opportunities to present your technical queries and concerns and receive responses from experts working for both Institutes, including CIPFA Panels and Working Parties
Immediate access to case studies from across the sector – as they emerge
Membership is £495 per organisation for a subscription running until 03 April 2012.

3. About CIPFA

CIPFA, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, is the professional body for people in public finance.  Our 14,000 members work throughout the public services, in national audit agencies, in major accountancy firms, and in other bodies where public money needs to be effectively and efficiently managed. As the world’s only professional accountancy body to specialise in public services, CIPFA’s portfolio of qualifications are the foundation for a career in public finance. They include the benchmark professional qualification for public sector accountants as well as a postgraduate diploma for people already working in leadership positions. They are taught by our in-house CIPFA Education and Training Centre as well as other places of learning around the world. We also champion high performance in public services, translating our experience and insight into clear advice and practical services. They include information and guidance, courses and conferences, property and asset management solutions, consultancy and interim people for a range of public sector clients. Globally, CIPFA shows the way in public finance by standing up for sound public financial management and good governance. We work with donors, partner governments, accountancy bodies and the public sector around the world to advance public finance and support better public services. This includes the development of local professional qualifications in African countries like Lesotho and Nigeria and in Europe in post conflict states in the Balkans.

4. About the CIH

The Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) is the professional body for people involved in housing and communities. We are a registered charity and not-for-profit organisation. We have a diverse and growing membership of 22,000 – both in the public and private sectors – living and working in over 20 countries on five continents across the world. Our members work for local authorities, housing associations, Arms Length Management Organisations, Government bodies, educational establishments and the private sector. Many tenants and residents are also members. We exist to maximise the contribution that housing professionals make to the wellbeing of communities.