Industry not prepared for the Future Homes Standard

Industry not prepared for the Future Homes Standard

Almost half (49%) of housebuilders say that their business is not prepared for the Future Homes Standard (FHS) and won’t be ahead of its implementation next year.

A further 61% think it will be extremely challenging to meet the legislation, according to new research of 100 UK housebuilders.

The research, commissioned by Polypipe Building Products, also revealed that there are varying levels of confidence that the FHS will be successful. In fact, over half (53%) said that while they welcome the Future Homes Standard, they do not think it is viable in the current environment and 57% said that the Standard will be a barrier to future housing delivery.

Despite the challenges, the FHS is due to come into effect in 2025 and will require that CO2 emissions produced by new homes should be 75-80% lower than those built to the previous standards.

This means that, while it is expected that there will be a 6-12-month grace period following the regulations coming into force, housebuilders and developers should already be well underway with preparation to meet the expected deadlines.

However, in order to meet the new regulations encompassed by the Standard, two thirds of housebuilders (65%) feel that more government support is required and a further 68% cited that the government needs to invest in a well-funded National Retrofit Strategy if they are serious about addressing the climate emergency.

Hayley Hayes, Head of Specification at Polypipe Building Products commented: “The way that we heat our homes is one of the biggest contributors to carbon emissions in the UK, so the Future Homes Standard is a significant and welcome step towards achieving net zero.

“However, the new legislation will only be effective if housebuilders are equipped to implement these changes properly and – with major challenges faced by housebuilders, including issues with planning, the economy, and ambitious housing targets – meeting new legislation will put them under additional pressure in an already difficult climate.

“But it isn’t that the solutions aren’t out there. Manufacturers across the industry have invested in innovative new products and systems that could mean we are not as far off meeting the Future Homes Standard as we think. Instead, the industry needs support from manufacturers, trade associations, and employers via education, upskilling and technical support to ensure heating and plumbing systems are truly future-ready.

“At Polypipe Building Products, we work closely with housebuilders, developers, specifiers and contractors to ensure that they have the support, resources and materials required to comply with the Future Homes Standard. Our technical and specification teams are always on hand to offer advice, support and guidance when it comes to system design.

“Further to this, we have recently expanded Polypipe’s circular material use initiative in which we have partnered with multiple housebuilders, from SMEs to national firms, to decrease waste on site and recycle plastic back into the construction industry. We will be sharing more detail on this soon.”

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