The Future Homes Standard Consultation Released
The Future Homes Standard Consultation which covers changes to Part L (conservation of fuel and power) and Part F (Ventilation) of the Building Regulations for new dwellings was released yesterday (1st October 2019). Elmhurst has quickly reviewed the information provided and have highlighted the key parts for industry to digest.
What is the Future Homes Standard?
The Government has committed to introduce a Future Homes Standard in 2025, as part of a journey towards the legal target of all the UKs greenhouse gas emission to be net zero by 2050. Currently homes (both new and existing) account for 20% of emissions. The Government expect that a home built to the new standard will have 75-80% less carbon emission than one built to the current Part L (2013) standards.
Therefore the new Part L must be a meaningful step change (uplift) towards the Future Homes Standard. The intent being to make new homes more energy efficient and to future proof them in readiness for low carbon heating systems.
Headlines of the Consultation
Overview of each section
The Future Homes Standard section is presented towards the start of the consultation providing a proposal of what a Future Home standard should look like, how to implement it and potential timelines. Other high level section information can be found within the tabs below.
Changing the target by which a home is deemed to comply. They propose 4 performance metrics for a home to be measured against these are:
- Introduce a new Primary Energy Target
- Continue the use of CO2 as a secondary target – with the 2 options proposed (20% or 31% reduction)
- Introducing a households affordability standard (based on the EPC rating)
- Updating minimum standards of fabric and fixed building services
- Removing Fabric Energy Efficiency (FEE) Standard as a metric e.g. Target FEE and Dwelling FEE.
- Altering the minimum efficiencies of building service and controls
- Future proofing new dwellings to be ready for low carbon heating systems in the future
- Improving compliance with Part L
- Adopting SAP10.1, which will include the latest evidence on primary energy, CO2 emissions, price etc.
- Removing Governments Approved Construction Details
- Introducing new technological factors to community heating schemes
- Simplifying structure and guidance relating to Part L
- Simplification of determining the ventilation rate and system design required for new build homes
- Simplifying the structure and guidance relating to Part F
- Providing information to building owners
- Revising the current approved methodology to air tightness testing to an independent body, CIBSE away from current ATTMA
- Propose all new homes are tested (not current sample approach)
- Limiting incentives in SAP for very air tight homes (<3m3/m2.h)
- Reflecting uncertainty in air permeability tests by reducing granulatory within SAP to 0.5m3/m2.h.
- Exploring the potential of alternative methods/approaches to showing compliance – specifically the Pulse Test.
- Provide better guidance
- Provide new Part L compliance Report
- Propose photographic evidence of the home
- Providing all information to householders
- Educate occupiers on how to operate homes
- All the above an effort to reduce the performance gap
- Proposing new rules to encourage building homes to the latest Part L Standards
Elmhurst will as always liaise with our expert members to develop a considered response to this important consultation. There is a lot of detail provided within the consultation and over the coming days we plan to undertake a full analysis of it, with our findings and observations included.
This consultation is supported by a plethora of other documents including: SAP10.1, Approved Documents L and F (draft guidance), research papers on ventilation and indoor air quality, and overheating homes, impact assessments and a new BR443 document.
This is a 14 week consultation therefore the deadline for responses is 10th January 2020.