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10 Aug 2022 < Back

Domestic retrofit and the low carbon revolution

Over the last six months I have completed the Level 5 Retrofit Coordination training course, with assessments delivered and administered by The Retrofit Academy.

The people we see on TV belligerently sitting in the road and gluing themselves to windows and trains, are the vanguard of a movement that recognises the need to act before the planet catches fire. Adapting our homes to make them more energy efficient is now inevitable. The pressure to act is becoming unbearable and the inevitability of mass retrofit is unavoidable.

The cost of fuel has become the most obvious catalyst to action on our indexable crawl toward becoming a low carbon economy. The threat of impending climate apocalypse seems to have taken a bit of a back seat.

Carbon net zero economy by 2050

If the threat of a £3,500 fuel bill isn’t enough, Governments have signed legally binding international agreements to limit global warming and deliver a carbon net zero economy by 2050. In essence, giving us no choice but to act and act quickly. It’s only reasonable to assume that the legislation that is being enacted now, is just the start of things to come.

After listening to Lord Callanan at a recent event in London, I don’t think it will be too long until we see primary legislation strongly “incentivising” us to insulate and fit low carbon heating.

Revised Building Regulations

During the pandemic draft proposals requiring landlords to provide tenants with dwellings that are EPC ‘C’ or above, were tabled. This is likely to passed into law and brought into effect by 2025.

Part L of the building regulations (Conservation of Fuel and Power) has been revised. The revision brings what was the “existing buildings” annex (L1b) into the document. In our view the document strengthens the need to consider and deliver insulation during the renovation or alteration of any “thermal element”.

BS 40104 – A new British Standard

If we then consider that changes that are coming down the track with HSE, building regulations and the Building Safety Act then we can only surmise that all the rules set out in Part L will start to be enforced in a meaningful way.

The PCA is also involved in providing information to a new British standard that supports PAS 2035. BS40104 is aimed at retrofit assessors and sets a standard for those responsible in identifying issues that might prevent the successful introduction of retrofit measures - damp and condensation being amongst the main issues of concern.

Then when we step back and look at all this stuff can we see an easy way for regular people to access good responsible contractors, who know what they are doing and who deliver good quality work at a reasonable price?

The creation of safe, reliable procurement

It is clear to me that a normal, but no less rigorous or accountable avenue for safe, reliable procurement needs to be created. I completed the retrofit coordinators course to understand the process, the technical elements, gain some insights and relate to the pressures that are building up inside the domestic retrofit market. Now that’s concluded and we can see the landscape a little better, perhaps we need to have a think about where we want to position ourselves?

We will be discussing this at our forthcoming International Property Care Conference on 22nd September. To book your place or to find out more, click on the button below...

Property Care Conference 2022 >>


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