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What is the Decent Homes Standard?

What is the Decent Homes standard?


This is the Standard that the Government set for all Council homes to reach by 2010. A ’Decent’ home is one which is wind and weather tight, warm and has modern facilities.    


Guidance on the implementation of the Decent Homes Standard is available from the Department for Communities and Local Government.  


The Decent Homes criteria is set out below. 


The Decent Homes criteria


A Decent Home must meet the following criteria ;

  1. It must meet the current statutory minimum standard for housing 
  2. It is in a reasonable state of repair
  3. It has reasonably modern facilities and services
  4. It provides a reasonable degree of thermal comfort

Details on each of the criteria is set out below:


1. Current statutory minimum standard for housing 




With the implementation of Part 1 of the Housing Act 2004 on 6 April 2006, the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) replaced the Housing Fitness Standard as the first criterion of The Decent Home Standard.


The HHSRS is a risk assessment procedure, looking at potential hazards and their likelihood of occurrence. The HHSRS does not set a standard.


2. Reasonable state of repair


Pictures of newly rendered houses


A home will not meet this criterion if either;

  • one or more of the key building components are old and because of their condition need replacing or major repair; or
  • two or more of the other building components are old and, because of their condition, need replacing or major repair.

Key building components are;

  • external roofs
  • roof structure and covering
  • windows/doors
  • chimneys
  • central heating boilers
  • gas fires
  • storage heaters
  • electrics

Other building components include kitchens and bathrooms.


3. Reasonably modern facilities and services 


Pictures of newly improved kitchen being decorated



A home will not meet this criterion if it lacks three or more of the following;

  • A reasonably modern kitchen (20 years old or less);
  • A kitchen with adequate space and layout;
  • A reasonably modern bathroom (30 years old or less);
  • An appropriately located bathroom and wc;
  • Adequate insulation against external noise (where external noise is a problem);
  • Adequate size and layout of common areas for blocks of flats.    

4. Reasonable degree of thermal comfort


Picture of a new thermostatic radiator valve and loft insulation work




A home must have both effective insulation and efficient heating.  


Visit the Department for Communities and Local Government website for more information on the Decent Homes Standard.    

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