Committees & Working groups

HBF Committees & Working Groups

From time to time the HBF's Board establishes new working groups, with specific terms of reference, to address new issues of concern to the industry or a significant group of members. HBF encourages members to offer their expertise to these groups and to play a full part in contributing to the debate and, therefore, inform HBF's response to key issues.

Standing Committees

The CSTC meets three times a year at HBF's London office.  The Committee works with CITB (Construction Skills) and our members, developing strategies to increase the level of apprenticeships in the industry and produce improvements in the sector.  

Chairman: Bruce Boughton, Lovell

The HBF's Health and Safety Committee meets jointly with the Housebuilders' Health and Safety Forum four times a year.

Membership is open to any health and safety professional from a member company, subject to the Chairman's approval. Members of the committee are expected to encourage their companies to sign up to the Health and Safety Charter and to participate in intitiatives to promote it.

The committee elects a chairman and deputy for a year, after which the deputy takes over the chairmanship and a new deputy is elected for the following year.

The committee has seven standing working parties which address the objectives of the Action Plan accompanying the HBF's Health and Safety Charter and the Steering Group meets four times a year to decide on their proposals which then go to the main committee for approval. 

Other sub groups are formed to deal with arising issues, notably to comment on consultations such as the proposed amendments to the CDM regulations. 

The committee maintains close links with HSE (a representative sits on the committee).

As well as offering advice to members on health and safety issues, the committee also publishes guidance leaflets – available in Published information.

The working parties are made up of volunteers from the main committee who may co-opt their colleagues on occasion to assist.

Chairman: David Appleby, Taylor Wimpey

The National Technical & Sustainability Committee meets four times a year at HBF's London office to consider technical issues relating to housebuilding.

Its members review and comment on aspects of government policy in relation to changes in technology and construction, particularly regulations which affect building practice and construction and the commercial implications of proposed changes.

They also, where possible, propose a realistic regulatory framework and protection for the housebuilding industry in all matters relating to land development.

They consider the policies of utility companies and negotiate with them and their regulators to promote competition, reduce charges and ensure value for money in the provision of services.

NTSC also ensures that housebuilders are represented on external groups and organisations with common interests to ensure adequate liaison with them on key issues.

Chairman: Dale Saunders, Taylor Wimpey

Regional Technical Meetings are held three times a year within eight regions in England and Wales. At these meetings the agendas are generally based around the discussions that take place at NTC meetings along with regional issues. Regional issues are closely monitored, if there is a likelihood of these becoming national issues they are taken back to the next NTC meeting.

RTMs usually have a guest speaker on a topical issue.

The two-way flow of information between NTC and RTM is an important and vital. As such the structure and format of these groups is very important to HBF.

HBF are active on the national stage, on behalf of the industry, in a number of areas related to planning.

HBF have worked closely with a number of Government departments in the formulation and direction of policy-making including the CLG and HM Treasury.

HBF are members of the National Planning Forum  and have an active dialogue with a number of fellow trade federation including the BPF and CBI.

Over the past year, HBF have been addressing key planning issues with a number of organisations including the Planning Inspectorate, Housing Corporation and the CABE.

The HBF Planning Committee meets three times a year to discuss thse issues and formulate industry responses.

Chairman: Lee Bishop, Taylor Wimpey

Other Working Groups include

We are very mindful of the particular needs of smaller developers. Throughout the downturn we stressed to Government the importance of SMEs playing a part if we are to see significant overall increases in housing supply – and pushed Government hard for policies to allow them to deliver and to encourage new firms to enter the market.

We brought together a group of housing developers to talk to HCA and DCLG officials about the Government’s proposals for expanding custom build and the role house builders could play. We have arranged meetings and one-to-one discussions between smaller developers and officials at DCLG and the Cabinet Office to discuss the barriers faced by SMEs, especially development finance.

As a result of this work we have seen a number of developments aimed at assisting SMEs including;

Builders Finance Fund. A £525M fund to get sites of between 15 and 250 units underway.

Custom build. Government announced a £150M loan fund to bring forward ‘shovel ready’ sites of five or more plots for custom build housing.

Affordable Housing. The proposal to restrict S106 Affordable Housing demands to sites of 10 or more units is a direct response to the needs of SMEs.

Reduced carbon homes policy. New homes built on ‘smaller’ sites will be exempt from the requirement to achieve Code level 5 Energy.

Help to Buy.  We have also helped coordinate meetings with HCA officials at which smaller developers can discuss the detailed operation of the Help to Buy Equity Loan scheme. Over 1300 builders are now signed up, the majority of which are SMEs.

The Retirement Homebuilders Group represents the interests of members working in the retirement housing sector.

It is a new HBF committee set up to replace "RHG (Retirement Housing Group)" that is no longer part of HBF.  

To find out more information or to join this group please get in touch with Marian Macdonald.  

Covers: Primarily Help to Buy Equity Loan (HtB1) and Affordable Housing

Meetings: Quarterly member meetings with HCA

Covers: Public land disposal

Meetings: Irregular meetings (2 or 3 per year) with HCA

Covers: Government PRS initiatives

Meetings: Irregular meetings (about 2 per year) with DCLG and HCA

Covers: Regulation of second-charge mortgages (used in shared equity) from March 2016

Meetings: Primarily to keep members informed, but in time to seek views and probably arrange the odd meeting