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Scot Gov SBA Pilot Scheme

James Gibb remains committed to keeping you informed and as such we are pleased to provide details on the latest update regarding External Wall Systems and the involvement of Scottish Government via their SBA Pilot Scheme.

Scottish Government Single Buildings Assessment (SBA) Pilot Scheme. 

We are all aware that there was the registration process for developments affected by this issue and the submissions provided to Scottish Government in May 2021. The caveat for applications was that developments had a survey in one form or another completed.

Following submissions, the Scottish Government shortlisted twenty-five developments from the initial sixty plus developments registered. It should be noted that it is expected that there are more developments with similar issues, not registered with the Scottish Government at this time.

The developments in the pilot were provided with an Application Form to be completed and submitted to the Scottish Government. This was to either:

  • provide previous surveys completed for consideration of funding by the Scottish Government or,
  • seek funding for more in-depth surveys, if the survey submitted did not meet the criteria, as per the guidance provided by Scottish Government.

This guidance can be found on the Scottish Government website.

The application process

Homeowners and/or their advisors were requested to submit the Application Form and various parties have taken the following different approaches:

  • Homeowners as groups have engaged legal representation, suppliers or other to arrange surveys and associated costs for remedials.
  • Certain factors have acted on the homeowner’s behalf by submitting the Application Form and arranging surveys.
  • Other options have been progressed by homeowners.

All parties are still finding their way through the process, including the Scottish Government.

Scottish Government information

Having had various meetings with the Scottish Government during which we had highlighted certain key issues surrounding this matter not being part of the factoring remit, including the fact that Property Factors are facility managers and their PI Insurance may not cover exposure to comment on building types, construction or structure.

We also highlighted that whilst certain factors are willing to assist, we do not have the technical knowledge or necessary insurance, nor do we receive a management fee that would cover this level of exposure. Since these meetings, we have received the following information from the Scottish Government, on the process:

  • A project manager can be appointed to submit the application form on homeowner’s behalf.  This will be funded by the Scottish Government.
  • A project manager can be appointed to write specifications, send out tenders and manage the contract process for fire safety surveys. This will be funded by the Scottish Government.
  • The Scottish Government will authorise the supplier to be appointed, following the application/tender process.
  • The surveys will identify the remedial work required. The Scottish Government have not committed or commented on remedial work funding at this time.

The Scottish Government will confirm, following progress of the Pilot, in early 2022, when developments which were not in the original pilot process will be considered. It is an opinion only, but we can only assume this is likely to be reviewed following the associated cost of the pilot funding, versus the initial Barnet funding of £97m.

David Reid, Deputy CEO at James Gibb would be happy to provide further responses to any questions that the above may raise.

James Gibb is a credible voice across the residential factoring industry and actively engage with the Scottish Government and other relevant agencies on property law, regulation and matters relating to heritable property in Scotland.

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