Tony Chauhan, Property Partner at Bowling & Co Solicitors comments on the Government’s response to the consultation on Future Homes Standard (FHS), and consults on Future Buildings Standard. He explains that “the changes are going to have a positive impact upon the environment and will require the construction industry to adapt to be more energy efficient in the way they build. This will mean more cost and careful planning for construction methods.”
In October 2019, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) published a consultation on the Future Homes Standard to be introduced for new homes in England by 2025.
The consultation proposed that new build homes be future-proofed with low carbon heating (particularly heat pumps and heat networks) and high levels of energy efficiency of building fabric.
On 19 January 2021, the MHCLG published its response to its October 2019 Future Homes Standard (FHS) consultation and a consultation on a Future Buildings Standard (FBS).
The response to the FHS consultation confirms:
- From 2025, the FHS will require new homes to be zero-carbon ready and to have carbon emissions 75-80% lower than those built under current standards. The government will consult on a technical specification for the FHS in 2023.
- There is to be an interim uplift in Part L (conservation of fuel and power) Building Regulations standards in 2021, which will mean new homes are to produce 31% less carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Developers will need to provide a building notice or deposit plans by June 2022 and commence work on each individual building by June 2023.
- As part of the planning for the future the role of local planning authorities will be clarified as part of the planning reforms initiated in 2020.
The key proposals in the FBS consultation will apply to new non-domestic buildings from 2025, and for new non-domestic buildings and new standards to mitigate overheating in residential buildings by 2021 via an uplift to the Part L Building Regulations standards.
This is not legal advice; it is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.
- MHCLG: The Future Homes Standard: summary of responses, and government response (19 January 2021).
- MHCLG: Consultation: The Future Buildings Standard (19 January 2021).
- MHCLG: Guidance: Building Regulations: Approved Documents L, F and Overheating (consultation version) (19 January 2021).
- MHCLG: Press release: Rigorous new targets for green building revolution (19 January 2021).