Housing: Standards

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 16th June 2020.

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Photo of Alex Norris Alex Norris Shadow Minister (Health and Social Care)

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps the Government is taking to help ensure that housing is (a) healthy and (b) energy efficient.

Photo of Christopher Pincher Christopher Pincher Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)

This Government is committed to improving housing standards and the energy efficiency of homes.

In October 2019, we published a consultation on the Future Homes Standard, which proposed a highly ambitious uplift to energy efficiency standards for new homes, along with improvements to the standards for ventilation in new homes. Within this consultation, we also committed to consult further on energy efficiency standards where work is carried out in existing homes, and on an overheating standard for new homes.

Within the Clean Growth Strategy, we proposed that as many homes as possible will be upgraded to an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) Band C by 2035, where practical, cost-effective and affordable. We are planning to publish a Heat and Buildings Strategy in due course, which will set out the immediate actions we will take for reducing emissions from buildings.

Policies and guidance are also in place to make sure that both social housing and private rented accommodation are fit and healthy places to live, including the Decent Homes Standard and the Housing Health and Safety Rating System. The Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act came into force on 20th March 2019. We also plan to bring forward a Social Housing White Paper, which will set out further measures to ensure social homes are safe and decent.

The National Planning Policy Framework encourages local planning policies and decisions so that developments create places that are sustainable, and which promote health and well-being.

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