New Building Regulations You Need To Know About

Learn more about the recent building regs changes

This year new building regulation have changed yet again, impacting thousands of new build homes and many existing properties too. These changes will have a large influence in the sphere of property building and property development as they strive to meet these new requirements. Everyone from self-builders to large development companies, extenders and even property renovators will feel the effects of these changes, and will change how buildings are constructed, renovated and maintained in the decades to come.  
The changes which came into force in June 2022 were first outlined at the end of 2021, and a large £6.6m investment has been set aside to improve how energy efficient buildings made in the UK are. A whopping 40% of all energy consumed in the UK comes from supplying energy in the form of electricity and heating to homes. 
In a bid to reduce this, the government declared this figure must come down drastically, and so from June 2022 the new regulations came into place that every new home built has to produce a third less carbon dioxide than is currently happening. 
Not only does this apply to new buildings being created, but those in the home renovation business too must adhere to the rules, by reducing energy and emissions of carbon on each project. If you had already started your renovations before this date then the rules may not apply to you, it all depends how much of the reconstruction work has already been completed. 
The new changes were brought in by the newly created DHLUC (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities) which is aiming to set Britain on target to hit its target of net zero in line with other countries who have made similar pledges. It will also very likely function as a bridge to the Future Homes Standard which is due to be introduced in 2025. 
Here is a rundown of everything important you should know about these new building regulations, and how they can influence your developments. 

So, which building regulations have actually been affected?

Let’s take a look at how you can make the most of these new regulations and stay on the right side of the law whether you are a renovator or self-builder. At the end of the day, it does look like yet another layer of red tape to wade through, however the quality of properties is going to be improved with the introduction of these rules which can only be for the good. 

PART L - Insulation

This section deals with how both power and fuel are conserved in a home, and this new legislation to Part L relates to how insulated a property is. This will now undergo a different procedure of inspection and assessment known as SAP10. 
Self-builders must now conduct a range of audits on the site to verify that the plan details have been successfully implemented as planned, and this needs to be backed up with photographic evidence. Thermal bridging is no longer encouraged, and the U-value of a property has also been raised to make sure it is retaining the heat it generates. 
This regulation also applied to new home installations such as windows or doors, each having to meet or exceed a certain U-value threshold. Most manufacturers are now creating their installations to meet these requirements, but if you are looking for something like an extension then there may be limits on how much glass you are allowed to use. 
It also covers flow temperatures in heating systems, reducing it from 75 degrees down to just 55, a huge difference. 

PART F - Ventilation

Part F concerns ventilation, and this newly updated regulation has been created with the intention of making those in the industry realise how important ventilation is and how it impacts a home. The main thing to note here for companies and individuals carrying out extensions and renovations is that ventilation must be adequate but not letting excess heat escape unnecessarily. 
There are already existing regulations here in place for this which govern the kind of fittings which can be used, as well as controlled services. Checklists have been created to allow builders to check whether the ventilation in a property is sufficient, along with guidance on the importance of properly ventilating spaces. Replacement windows too now also need to installed with ventilation vents known as trickle vents to allow for the movement of air. 
There are also new recommendations for all replacement windows to be fitted with trickle vents unless a) there is an alternative form of ventilation, such as air bricks or whole house Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery (MVHR), or b) that the works do not result in the ventilation being worse than before the works were done. 

PART O - Overheating

A simple new regulation update regarding overheating in a property, and it is designed to prevent or place limits on solar gain which is excessive, and how to remove that heat from a property in an energy efficient way. This all depends on whether a house benefits from cross-ventilation, and it also places limits on how much glazing is allowed in a specific room.

PART S - Vehicle Recharging

Relating to electric vehicle charging ports, this amendment hopes to boost the number of newly built properties which can support an electric vehicle. This futureproofing comes with guidance to do with the installation of chargers and how to utilise them safely. 
A price cap of £3.6k has been implemented on each installation to prevent them from becoming too expensive, but it will clearly affect builders and new homeowners who are paying for something that they maybe do not want or need at the current time. 

If you’re planning on renovating your home in 2023, you can rest assured that Refresh Renovations are always staying on top of all the changes to building regulations in the UK. Whether you’re simply looking to renovate a single room such as the kitchen or bathroom, or need an extension building, get in touch with us today and we’ll be able to walk you through every aspect of your renovation or remodel.

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