Green rule to be tightened

The government will make the code for sustainable homes mandatory from next April after 70 per cent of consultation respondents backed the idea.

Results released this week show that the majority of organisations including local planning bodies called for the code to be compulsory. Only 11 per cent disagreed, while a further 20 per cent gave no answer.

The code will set a national standard, within which the house building industry must design and construct homes to meet higher environmental standards.

The rating will come into effect for all homes that reach the full planning application stage, a building notice submission stage or an initial notice for the purpose of building regulations.

The code will be updated to reflect changes to building and other rules while lifetime homes standards will also be introduced.

Town and Country Planning Association chief executive Gideon Amos insisted: "It is absolutely right that this code is mandatory. However, we must not underestimate challenges such as cost implications.

"Planners and developers need to work closely together on the development economics so that infrastructure and affordable homes achieved through planning charges do not suffer."

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