Any attempt by the government to impose further changes to its Future Homes Standard plan risks increasing the confusion that already exists.
The warning comes from Rehau CEO Martin Hitchin in the manufacturer’s new white paper highlighting ongoing uncertainty around Future Homes Standard regulations after the National Home Decarbonisation Group pointed to industry’s ‘severely shaken’ confidence in the Government following the watering down of national green commitments.
He said: “Government actions such as adjusting the nation’s net zero pathway and shutting the Energy Efficiency Taskforce have understandably provoked uncertainty and concern among housebuilders. The sector is rightly committed to decarbonising existing building stock and constructing sustainable new homes, and the FHS is a key part of that.
“However, uncertainty remains on key components and whether they meet the standard performance levels, even though this is possible right now with the right design and specification. Given this lack of awareness in the market identified in our recent survey, we would recommend the Government keep to the current FHS timetable to prevent further confusion.”
He advises housing sector stakeholders to leverage supply chain expertise from organisations such as Rehau, as well as conducting their own research, adding that the need to do so will become even more pressing if the government revises the standard as part of its current stance around building energy efficiency legislation.
“It is a huge but necessary challenge to ensure marked emissions reductions and increased thermal performance on new and existing homes as required under the standard,” he concludes in the report.
“Given the timescales associated with projects and the fact the FHS will become mandatory in a little over a year, all stakeholders involved in housing construction need as much clarity as possible on what’s required.
“However, the Government’s current direction of travel is leading to more questions, not less. Consequently, it is vital that housebuilders communicate as much as possible with the supply chain if they are to be kept abreast of any potential changes. With this in mind, I would advise these stakeholders to read our latest report as a vital first step.”
The report, Future Homes Standard: Preparing UK Housing for 2025, based on a survey of 200 housing decision-makers, can be downloaded at https://window.rehau.com/uk-en/pvcu-windows-doors-composite-curtain-walling-specifiers/rehau-in-the-frame/future-homes-2025