The end of the Code for Sustainable Homes, Sustainability Statement and Pre Assessments

12 05 2015

Councils will now only be able to impose certain nationally agreed sustainability levels as planning requirements for new residential developments, the technical details of which will be contained within the Building Regulations. The government hopes this will help reduce the cost and complexity of building homes in England and stop the cherry picking approach to housing standards.

Thanks to the Housing Standards Review, the Code for Sustainable Homes has now effectively been removed from planning policy in England and was removed in Wales in 2014.

The Ministerial Statement said: “…local planning authorities and qualifying bodies preparing neighbourhood plans should not be set in their emerging local plans, neighbourhood plans, or supplementary planning documents, any additional local technical standards or requirements relating to the construction, internal layout or performance of new dwellings. This includes any policy requiring any level of the Code of Sustainable Homes to be achieved by new development; the government has now withdrawn the code, aside from the management of legacy cases”.

What this means for you:

New Planning Application for housing will not be required to achieve any specific Code for Sustainable Homes standards. A range of standards for access and water efficiency will be applied to new schemes by planning, some of which provide a higher standard than the minimum national building regulations – these technical standards will be enforced through the Building Regulation process Space standards will be nationally described and will be implemented through the planning system. In addition, a new security standard has now been included in the Building Regulations (Part Q) Waste storage standards will now be properly considered in new housing development. All existing Planning Applications (or when a site has started) will need to continue with Code Standards (unless the condition is removed). Housing Association and RSLs will still need to apply Code Standards under the National Affordable Housing Programme.

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