Future Homes Standard

17th Mar, 2020

The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government have now completed their consultation phase on the proposed updates to Building Regulations Part L for new build dwellings. Services Design Solution have been busy compiling a response to the proposed changes…….. The future looks bright….

Please click here to download a pdf version of this article.

Transitional Arrangements
We agreed that smaller schemes should not be subject to transitional changes in Building Regulation requirements. However, larger schemes with appropriate phasing plans should follow the updated regulations.

Standard Assessment Procedure
The Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP 10) is due to be released in parallel with the Part L 2020 updates. The table below summarises a high level comparison between the current (2013) and proposed (2020) regulations for a typical detached dwelling.

  • Significant improvement in carbon dioxide emissions (CO2) for systems using electric
  • Whilst gas improves in SAP 10, there is still a failure in overall emissions compliance. Direct electric passes for the same!
  • The SAP Rating (running cost) is worse in SAP 10 – The price of electricity is ever increasing!



Part L

A big change is due to the fuel emission factors and the governments agenda leans towards an uplift to the Part L 2013 Building Regulation requirements of a 31% improvement in 2020 and 75-80% by 2025

  • Uplift to Part L 2013 Building Regulation requirements in 2020, to either a 20% or 31% improvement in CO2
  • A move to an all-electric heating and hot water supply with greater emphasis on heat pump technologies proposed
  • The proposal shows that electricity is now cleaner through the supply of green energy (wind, photovoltaic panels etc) and more favourable over gas supply
  • Move to primary energy being the principal performance metric and CO2 as the secondary metric
  • Introduction of an in use affordability assessment procedure
  • Removal of the Fabric Energy Efficiency (FEE) Target and Approved Construction Details
  • Updates to the Conventions for U-value Calculations BR443
  • Minimum fabric performance improvements
  • Minimum building service performance improvements
  • Home User Guide


Air Tightness

  • Greater emphasis on air tightness testing in all new build dwellings
  • Limit to the credit given in SAP for energy savings from airtightness for naturally ventilated dwellings
  • Air testing required to all new build dwellings
  • Pulse test should be introduced into statutory guidance as an alternative airtightness testing method alongside the blower door test


Build Quality

  • A proposed move towards improving build quality and site testing
  • Build quality guidance and checklist
  • Introduction of photographic evidence as a requirement for producing the as-built energy assessment for new dwellings
  • Additional requirements in providing data to both Building Control and the homeowner



  • National grid capabilities
  • Energy prices and home owner running costs
  • Transitional arrangements
  • Overheating risks
  • Technology lead agenda
  • Data behind in use energy consumption and building user behaviour
  • Removal of the Fabric Energy Efficiency target