Arms length management organisations (ALMOs)
Arms length management organisations (ALMOs)

The following Local Government guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Arms length management organisations (ALMOs)
  • The concept
  • Structure
  • Tenants
  • Staffing
  • Relationships with Tenant Management Organisations (TMOs)
  • Public procurement rules
  • New build and other ventures
  • Works procurement
  • National Federation of ALMOs

An arms length management organisation (ALMO) is a not-for-profit company that provides housing services on behalf of a local housing authority (LHA). Usually an ALMO is set up by the LHA to manage and improve all or part of its housing stock with the LHA retaining strategic decision making. Ownership of the housing stock normally remains with the LHA.

ALMOs are an established part of the social housing world since they were first established in 2002. There are 33 in England, although there was once double that figure, responsible for almost half a million properties. ALMOs have instigated and in some cases completed works funded by the government’s Decent Homes Programme which ran from 2000 but which largely came to an end following the introduction of LHA account self-financing in 2012. For further reading on the decent homes programme see: 2010 to 2015 government policy: rented housing sector, Appendix 5. A report was published by the National Audit Office into the Decent Homes Programme.

However, having completed their Decent Homes Programmes, a number of LHAs have questioned the rationale for continuing with their ALMOs with the result that alongside those LHAs who have continued with their ALMOs, others have transferred their stock to their ALMOs (having made constitutional changes to the ALMO and registered it as a Registered Provider (RP) of social housing)