Zero carbon exemption will create more local homes, says FMB

Recent press reports stating that small housing developments will be exempt from some zero carbon homes requirements is a positive move towards helping to create more homes and consumer choice says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB, said:

“Speculation ahead of the Queen’s Speech on Wednesday that small housing developments will be exempt from some zero carbon homes requirements is very welcome news. The FMB has been warning for some time that the rapid implementation of the zero carbon homes policy is threatening to deluge smaller house builders in a tsunami of costs that hinder their ability to build.”

Berry continued:

“Our research shows that small house builders consistently report that the cost implications for smaller developments are much higher than those estimated in government impact assessments. Worse still, SME house builders have been faced with a double whammy. Unlike volume house builders with large banks of prior consents which can be built out according to previous standards, SME house builders have been bearing the weight of extra costs and a steep learning curve immediately, without the resources which larger firms have at their disposal.”

Berry concluded:

“We are not against the principle of the zero carbon homes, or allowable solutions, though many will see it as yet another tax on developers. The key is for its implementation to be fair and not too hasty. Proposals to help ease the transition for smaller developers would be a smart move and would safeguard against the policy impacting on the delivery of much-needed new homes.”