The CIH code of ethics consists of a set of values, principles and behaviours that guide the expected professional conduct and judgement of CIH members.

Its aim is that all members working in housing, a values-based profession, can deliver the highest professional standards in their service to the community.

Housing professionals are faced with complex and difficult decisions in their roles and are in a position of trust in relation to their customers, employers and the public who rely on them to make professional and fair judgements.

The CIH code of ethics underpins the behaviours expected from members and supports the way in which decisions are expected to be made.

All CIH members are required to integrate these principles into every aspect of their professional behaviour and professional decision making.

1. Act with integrity and respect

In practice, members must:

  • Understand and uphold your professional and legal obligations
  • Be respectful, fair, transparent and honest in your work
  • Recognise conflicts of interest and ensure that your professional judgement and values are not compromised
  • Understand the differences between personal and professional relationships
  • Build trust in yourself, your employer/business and your profession
  • Act in the best interests of others, your clients and customers, your colleagues, your organisation and the community in which you work
  • Never take advantage of your position for personal gain
  • Trust in your professional judgement, ensuring you have all the relevant information before taking action, understanding the impact of your decisions, and critically learn from mistakes
  • Take the time to understand the context of the situation and the needs of those involved
  • Understand, value and demonstrate a commitment to equality and diversity and treat your customers and colleagues impartially and fairly
  • Challenge inappropriate, offensive or discriminatory behaviour
  • Safeguard others’ confidential information.

Integrity Ethical Inclusive

Self-evaluation questions

Here are some self-evaluation questions to see if you meet these standards.

  • Am I aware of all my legal and professional obligations and if not what do I need to do?
  • Would I be happy if my actions were made public in the press or on social media?
  • Do I understand what a conflict of interest would be in my role or organisation?
  • Do my personal preferences or views influence my behaviour or decisions?
  • Do I know what professional boundaries mean within the context of my role?
  • Is my behaviour in the workplace respected by my colleagues?
  • Do I act in self-interest? Do I always understand and act in the best interest of tenants/customers/partners?
  • Do people trust my professional judgment? Do I own up to my mistakes and learn from them?
  • Do I provide information and advice based on evidence and facts?
  • Can I see things from another person’s perspective/step into their shoes? How would I ensure that I did this with sensitivity to the
  • Am I comfortable challenging inappropriate, offensive, or discriminatory behaviour? Do I challenge false assumptions made about people who live in rented housing (both inside and outside of work)?
  • Do I create unnecessary obstacles by not considering circumstances or needs?

2. Maintain professional competence

In practice, members must:

  • Keep up with the general and specialist knowledge and skills that you need to do your job effectively
  • Share your knowledge and good practice with others
  • Make a positive contribution to team culture
  • Continue your professional development to build, maintain and learn new skills and knowledge, striving to achieve the highest standards
  • Honestly assess your development needs and commit to your own personal development addressing knowledge and skills gaps
  • Take pre-emptive action and proactively problem solve, using customer insight intelligence to shape your actions and prepare for future challenges
  • Take responsibility for your own development
  • Act within the scope of your own competence and role.

Skilled Knowledgeable

Self-evaluation questions

Here are some self-evaluation questions to see if you meet these standards.

  • Do I stay up to date with the latest policy and practice developments in housing? Do I adapt to change well?
  • Do I share my knowledge with others to create a learning environment among my colleagues?
  • Am I clear about the knowledge I need to effectively do my job?
  • Do I regularly review my own development and progress, how am I doing, what do I need to do more of?
  • Do I actively listen and really hear what people are saying?
  • Do I understand what challenges or triggers impact on my ability to be resilient? Do I take advantage of networks to support my development?

3. Be responsible and accountable

In practice, members must:

  • Reflect on the outcomes of your decisions and learn from them to improve your skills in the future
  • Actively apply lessons learnt and reflective practice
  • Ensure you consider the broad impact of your decisions
  • Contribute to the profession, and those you are responsible for, your colleagues, your organisation and the community, sharing experience, and supporting innovation and change
  • Support others in their development
  • Be an advocate for the profession
  • Get involved with CIH networks, influencing, public affairs and policy work
  • Speak up when faced with attitudes and behaviour that stereotype and stigmatise the housing sector
  • Create and contribute to a sense of community.

Leadership Advocate

Self-evaluation questions

Here are some self-evaluation questions to see if you meet these standards.

  • Have I changed how I work because of feedback I have received?
  • What kind of leader am I? Where have I made a change/impact? Where could I suggest
  • How do I support my colleagues to be leaders in their roles? Am I prepared to champion new ways of working?
  • Do I give feedback constructively in a cooperative manner?
  • How do I support others to be advocates for the housing profession?
  • Do I challenge the behaviours of colleagues and organisations that undermine the reputation of the profession? Do I call out unprofessional behaviour in others?
  • Am I a publicly positive representative of my organisation and the wider profession?

Professional standards self-assessment tool

The CIH professional standards build on seven characteristics to enable you to think about your professional development needs and how you can contribute to the professionalism of your organisation and the wider sector.

Complete our self-assessment to see how you compare and get a personalised report on your own professional profile.

Find out more

Code of conduct
Individuals who are part of our incredible membership network are required to uphold the CIH code of conduct to evidence their professionalism and dedication to the sector,
Code of conduct
Make a complaint about a member
Find out how to submit a complaint against a CIH member.
Equality, diversity and inclusion
We are committed to continuing to promote a variety of cultures and diversity across the housing sector. We'll continually challenge everything that we do to ensure that all aspects of our work are inclusive.