Code for Sustainable Homes
The Code for Sustainable Homes is a way of benchmarking the environmental and sustainable credentials of residential developments.
Coles Knapp have Accredited 'Code for Sustainable Homes' assessors and as such can produce both 'Design stage' and 'As Built' Code assessments. It is beneficial to involve your Code assessor as early in the design process as possible, so as many of the credit-earning issues as possible can be included in the design. Coles Knapp offer a free seminar on Code for Sustainable Homes for developers and architects which can help to increase your knowledge of the Code and covers the 'Issues', including an analysis of which are the easiest (and/or cheapest) to achieve.
When is a Code for Sustainable Homes Assessment Required?
It has been mandatory in England since May 2008 (with a zero rating being allocated if there is no assessment). Either an assessment or a "zero star certificate" will be required for all new dwellings. Some local authorities now insist on a rating (usually Code for Sustainable Homes Level 3) as part of planning conditions.
The Code has been adopted by the Welsh Assembly Government as 'the preferred tool to assess how sustainable development is being implemented in new homes in Wales'.
Since 1st September 2010, all applications for any number of dwellings must achieve Code Level 3 (+ 1 credit under the ENE1 issue). See the MIPP statement and TAN 22 for more information (available from the Welsh Assembly Government site) on sustainable development goals in Wales.
The Code for Sustainable Homes (sometimes referred to as CSH) provides a performance rating against various criteria and has been designed to enable a stepchange in sustainable building practice for new homes.
If a property attains Code Level 1, this means that performance is above that required as minimum by the Building Regulations. The maximum level is Code Level 6 and this includes a requirement for the home to be "zero carbon", i.e. having zero net emissions of carbon throughout the year - so any imported power must be replaced by exporting power generated from domestic renewables at another time. The design categories included within the Code are:
Surface water run-off
Health and well being
The Code introduces minimum standards for energy and water efficiency for every level. There are minimum standards for materials, surface water run-off and waste at entry level only. Additional points can still be gained by performance in other areas. The Code is closely linked to Building Regulations, which are the minimum standards required by law. The Code is intended to show the future direction of Building Regulations and provide greater regulatory certainty for the home building industry.
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