Hannah outlines when the uplift comes into force and details how to prepare for the changes.
What is the future homes standard?
The Future Homes Standard is part of the Government’s initiative to bring all greenhouse gas emissions to net zero 2025. The Government have proposed that new homes built to Future Homes Standard will have carbon dioxide emissions at least 75% lower than those built to current Building Regulations standard.
The Future Homes Standard looks to place higher obligations and requirements in order to satisfy the Energy Performance Certifications.
Despite the government only recently implementing further actions to improve the EPCs of properties, they feel that there is more that can be done to actively reduce the carbon footprint of homes.
What changes are being made to Part L of the building regulations?
Part L of the Building Regulations is used to control how the Energy Performance of a property is rated.
The Regulations are to encourage homeowners and developers to use more sustainable heat sources such as heat pumps, cooling systems and fixed lighting.
Whilst the Government will be setting procedures for the Part L to be properly implemented, it is intended that Local Authorities will have the ability to set higher energy efficiency standards in order to meet their own targets.
What is the aim of the Part L uplift?
The aim of the regulations is to achieve an average of a 27% reduction in the CO2 omissions compared to those back in 2013. The Government believes this can be achieved by using alternative lighting sources, heating systems and air-conditioning systems.
The Government have release a full fabric specification setting out the standard which is required.
The Government have also since announced that alterations to existing properties were the EPC rating is effected will be caught by these regulations, i.e replacing doors and windows in a property.
When does the interim Part L uplift come into force?
The Regulations will come into effect on 15 June 2022 and so any planning applications submitted after this date will be required to comply with the new regulations.
In respect of any planning applications submitted before this date, provided the works are commenced prior to 15 June 2023, they will not be required to comply with the new regulations.
How to prepare for the changes to Part L
Currently, it is thought that the regulations will only affect properties where construction commences after the effective date. The construction will include both full development and extensions on properties, essential where there are to be thermal changes to the Property.
You should ensure that any planning permission currently in place that is affected by Part L regulations are commenced before June 2023 otherwise further plans will be required.
You can also prepare for the changes for considering installing low carbon heating systems if you are intending to undertake development works.
How to comply with the interim Part L uplift
Whilst the Government have not yet issued their substantial regulations of the uplift, it is expected that homeowners and developers will be required to evidence the potential energy efficiency of development when applying for planning permission, in the same way as currently required.
The designs submitted will need to exceed the requirements contained in the Notional Building Specification. If diverting from this Specification you would be required to evidence low carbon elsewhere.
It is likely that the Government will push for higher supply of heat pumps in new developments to remove the need for solar power and gas boilers.
Keep up to date with Commercial Property News
To keep up to date with the latest developments in Commercial Property and related legislation, you can sign up to our email newsletter here.
Just enter your relevant details and select 'Commercial Property' and any other news that may take your interest.
Commercial Property Solicitors
If you have any questions following this article, please get in touch with our bright Commercial Property team for expert advice.