Consortium “disappointed” at proposed Future Homes Standard

construction site
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A consortium including the Good Homes Alliance and Bioregional has drafted a letter to DLUHC and DESNZ to express its disappointment in the proposed Future Homes Standard.

While acknowledging some positive measures are proposed, the consortium has said there are immediate concerns that need to be addressed in the 2025 regulations.

The letter highlights that all new homes should have integrated solar PV as standard and says that enhanced testing of buildings post-completion, or “As built” should be mandatory. It says:

We support the introduction of performance testing, but a wholly voluntary approach will not provide the necessary protection from sub-standard build quality causing increased energy bills. In order to ensure a home’s as-built thermal performance is as designed, mandatory performance testing needs to included using simple, low-cost, enhanced post-completion testing, such as short duration whole-house heat loss tests. In addition, more accurate post occupancy testing should be voluntary but incentivised.

The consortium also calls for embodied carbon to be included in the Future Homes Standard, stating:

Embodied carbon makes up 20% of UK built environment emissions and declarations of whole life carbon are already required for large building projects. Policies to measure and limit embodied carbon and apply circular economy approaches within the construction sector are urgent and should be included in FHS.

Other proposals include:

  1. Improve fabric standards for U values and air tightness.
  2. Improve new home ventilation systems.
  3. Reduce electricity generation investment required.

The group is inviting organisations to sign the letter, which will be sent to senior figures at DLUHC and DESNZ before the consultation closes on Wednesday 6th March. The deadline for signatories is Thursday 29th February.

Read and respond directly to the consultation here: gov.uk/government/consultations/the-future-homes-and-buildings-standards-2023-consultation