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The Housing Bill implementing the EU Directive for marketed homes Linn Rafferty National Energy Services and the Energy Advice Providers Group What the Directive requires Article 7: Energy performance certificate must be made available whenever a building is built, sold or let

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The Housing Bill implementing the EU Directive for marketed homes Linn Rafferty National Energy Services and the Energy Advice Providers Group

what the directive requires
What the Directive requires
  • Article 7:
    • Energy performance certificate must be made available whenever a building is built, sold or let
    • Provided to the prospective occupant – that is, before the decision to purchase/rent is made
    • Applies to dwellings and non dwellings, new and old alike
    • There are some exemptions, eg places of worship, homes used for less than 4 months a year, historic buildings
    • Certificate must contain benchmarks and recommendations to improve energy performance (but no requirement to carry them out)
  • Article 10:
    • Calls for qualified/accredited experts to prepare them
energy performance report why
Energy Performance Report – why?
  • BECAUSE.. European Directive requires us to do so;
  • BUT…
  • UK government are “leading the way” on combating global climate change
  • Buildings are the biggest culprit (with homes contributing more greenhouse gases than other buildings)
  • Most people don’t realise this – if they believe that climate change is happening, they blame it on other factors, such as transport
  • We need to change attitudes by raising awareness
  • We can also help people to save money on their fuel bills
built sold or let
Built, sold or let?
  • Marketed sales of new homes and existing homes
  • Non marketed sales of both (right to buy, portfolio)
  • Private Landlords – new and existing homes
  • Social Landlords – new and existing homes
  • The Housing Bill only applies to marketed sales
  • And within the Housing Bill: The Home Condition Report only applies to existing homes
  • The regulatory systems for non marketed homes and rented homes are not yet decided
the housing bill
The Housing Bill
  • Bill (part 5) introduces the Home Information Pack
  • Manifesto commitment 2001 – “to make it easier for people buying and selling homes through a new seller’s pack”
  • New approach to marketing homes..
    • HIP contains all the legal documents (LA searches, land registry, etc) that are normally obtained after the sale
    • HIP for an existing house contains the Home Condition Report, a completely new type of survey
    • Seller pays for survey instead of buyer
    • Buyers are aware of any problems before making an offer
    • Seller is also made aware of problems and can fix them before marketing if he wants the best price
the home condition report
The Home Condition Report
  • Only for existing homes, not new build
  • provides more information than the Homebuyers Survey and Valuation currently chosen by most buyers
  • Can be relied on by buyer, seller and lender
  • Reports on condition of all relevant parts of the home and gives a condition rating on scale of 1-3 for each element
  • Is an objective report on the condition of the home, delivered to prescribed standards
  • Contains an energy efficiency assessment
  • Has been tested by BRE in both technical and consumer trials
  • Currently being tested in combination with the energy survey element
electronic reporting
Electronic reporting
  • HCR is an electronic report stored on a central databank
    • Fast delivery, consistency and integrity
    • Reports will be easy to read, in a common format
  • HCRs will be prepared using
    • Unique report reference number for audit purpose
    • Electronic data recorded by a Home Inspector
    • Home Inspectors given a unique reference number showing their authority to work
    • Commercially provided software, approved by the HI Certification Scheme
    • Software will send surveys to a central online database for safe keeping and audit
software example
Software example

Integrated energy and home condition report software from SAVA

home inspectors
Home Inspectors
  • HCRs will be prepared only by registered Home Inspectors:
    • the Energy Performance Certificate also!
  • Certification scheme is currently being researched (HICB)
  • HIs will work to National Occupational Standards developed by PSNTO (now Asset Skills)
  • Qualification via the Awarding Body for the Built Environment (ABBE)
  • Quality Assurance for the Energy Report will sit alongside the quality assurance for the HCR
  • Conduct and complaints
  • Recruitment
standards and qualifications
Standards and qualifications
  • National Occupational Standards developed via industry consultation
  • They define the competencies and skills required
  • Qualification is awarded by the Awarding Body for the Built Environment (ABBE)
  • Vocationally Related Qualification (VRQ not NVQ)
  • To gain the qualification requires two things:
    • Present a portfolio of evidence to an Assessment Centre approved by ABBE
    • Pass the end test, set by ABBE
  • Separate, complementary NOS to be developed for Energy Inspection
  • A separate energy specific qualification
quality assurance
Quality Assurance
  • Consumer is key to the success of Directive
  • Home buyers need to understand and trust the reports, be motivated to install the suggested improvements
  • Consumer research shows they need the assurance of a quality controlled scheme to give them that trust
  • QA Involves..
    • Adopting a national methodology
    • Software approval
    • Training & Qualification
    • Registration (and option to revoke licence to practice)
    • Monitoring, including independent repeat inspections, against a specified quality standard
    • Code of conduct & complaints procedure
    • Insurance and reporting
need to recruit and train inspectors
Need to recruit and train inspectors
  • 7500 qualified Inspectors are needed
  • PSNTO research..
    • Likely pool at day one is 10,000 to 18,000 practitioners with some or most of the skills required
    • Upskilling is required for all..
    • To meet National Occupational Standards
    • To work to the Directive’s requirements for energy reporting (MUST use authorised energy survey system)
    • To use modern IT to create the reports (all are electronic)
    • To prepare for the end test (ABBE Award, compulsory for all)
developing the energy report
Developing the energy report
  • FAERO members each had their own reports
  • EST its Home Energy Check; BRE had an example created for an ODPM consultation exercise
  • Which design works best to motivate action? Do any of them?
  • Consumer trial and consultation via the EEPH
  • We put 3 options (EST, BRE, FAERO) to focus groups and the EEPH
  • Issues of energy efficiency need to be addressed from the home buyers perspective, reflecting their priorities and motivations
focus group recommendations 1
Focus group recommendations 1
  • Look like a professional survey
  • Use the A-G rating scale
  • Review the use of the SAP score
focus group recommendations 2
Focus group recommendations 2
  • Benchmark the comparison against a target for the home, not against an average score
  • Prioritise the recommended measures
  • Give broad cost guidance, rather than specific costs
  • Link the improvement measures to the uplift in energy rating
focus group recommendations 3
Focus group recommendations 3
  • Explain the technical terms
  • Separate the “no cost/low cost” behavioural tips from the main report
  • Provide a separate section on the environmental story
focus group recommendations 4
Focus group recommendations 4
  • Take advantage of the opportunity for follow up communication
  • Encourage vendors to take action before marketing
  • Details of focus group research is on the FAERO and Partnership websites
so what is an energy rating
So what is an energy rating?
  • A way of describing the energy performance of a home that is independent of the size of the home, or how the occupiers use their home
  • Used to compare homes of different ages, sizes, types, on a level playing field
  • Gives a straightforward indication of how good is the home’s standard of energy efficiency
  • Expressed as a SAP rating – a number between 1 and 120 - the higher the number, the better
  • Can also be expressed on an A – G scale (like white goods)
two ratings sap rdsap
Two ratings – SAP & RDSAP
  • SAP = Standard Assessment Procedure
    • Already exists (since 1995)
    • Used only for new build homes (where complete data is available from plans and specifications)
  • RDSAP = Reduced Data Standard Assessment Procedure
    • Had to be developed for the Directive
    • Used where the full SAP data can’t all be seen - in a survey or inspection of an existing home
what is a condition rating
What is a condition rating?
    • The Home Condition Report gives a statement about the condition of all relevant parts of the home – a condition rating
    • Each is rated is on a scale of 1 to 3 – good to awful
    • Much more precise than existing Homebuyers Survey and Valuation (HSV)
    • How easy is it to add the energy rating data? Can the two be combined in one inspection?
  • And so, lets look at the field trials..
rdsap technical field trials
RDSAP Technical field trials
  • 15 inspectors, 20 different dwellings
  • Inspectors had participated in last year’s HCR field trials so were already familiar with gathering HCR data
  • Field trial assessed how they coped with gathering the energy data at the same time as HCR
  • About half had already had energy survey training
  • All were trained to collect the energy data – but no background specialist knowledge provided
  • We found quite a lot of variability on several of the data items – sometimes way too much!
  • But we have confirmed that it takes very little extra time to collect, as part of a Home Condition inspection
not all homes varied
Not all homes varied
  • Inspectors were almost unanimous on the data collected for this small Housing Association bungalow:
  • And on average the energy survey took 30 mins
    • (87 for the combined HCR/ER)
some homes were less easy
Some homes were less easy
  • but there was much less agreement on this large, privately owned detached home:
  • on average the energy survey took 58 mins (2 1/2 hours for the combined HCR/ER)
e g differences in measurements
e.g: differences in measurements
  • Inspectors were surprised at how much their measurements varied..
  • Heat loss perimeter on ground floor:
    • 32.64m – 50.60m
  • On first floor:
    • 42.28m – 50.20m
  • Ground floor area:
    • 65.0m – 125.9m
e g is it a conservatory
e.g: is it a conservatory?
  • Does this house have a conservatory?
  • 11 said yes, 1 said no
  • Is the conservatory heated?
  • 5 said heated, 6 said unheated
  • Makes quite a difference for a large conservatory, with long glazed walls, since the energy used in heating a conservatory is considerable
  • An unheated conservatory shelters the outside wall and so it saves some energy
summary conclusions
Summary & conclusions
  • For the simpler properties, all agreed on the data
  • Most properties showed variation in some areas
  • Sometimes this made a big difference to the result
  • Good training is a must!
  • Even with basic training, the 15 surveyors made significant mistakes
  • With no training, the mistakes would have had even more impact
  • Improving the training courses is an important output of the field trial
conclusions training
Conclusions - training
  • Feedback from participants suggests that the training must include:
  • more detail – which data items matter most?
  • more examples – particularly of difficult properties
  • more guidance on making judgements
  • practical use of the energy rating software
conclusions improvements
Conclusions – improvements
  • Inspectors did not understand how the RDSAP system chose the improvement measures to put into the report
  • They often cancelled them when not necessary
  • Sometimes the correct recommendations were not made because the inspectors recorded the wrong data
  • If they had been able to see the recommendations via software, they would have better understood them
  • Home Inspectors will need access to the energy rating software while conducting their surveys (or very soon afterwards)
progress of the bill
Progress of the Bill
  • The Housing Bill was published for comment in 2003 and introduced to Commons last December
  • Third reading in the House of Lords on 13th September
  • Ministers again dismissed suggestions that Home Information Packs might not have to be ready at the start of marketing
  • Reason - the aim of the packs was to address ‘upfront’ the ‘root cause’ of consumer dissatisfaction with property transactions
  • Went to Report stage on 13th October
  • Royal Assent still anticipated by end November
  • The position today??
what next for faero
What next for FAERO?
  • Completion of RDSAP development, possibly a consumer trial
  • Define the requirements for new homes within HIP (using the SAP method)
  • Define the remaining legal framework for providing Energy Performance Certificates
  • [Housing Bill only provides for marketed sales of homes - EPCs are required for all buildings, whenever built, sold or let]
  • Set up Energy Certificate provider schemes
  • [Different schemes for new and “second hand” homes]
what next for home inspectors
What next for Home Inspectors?
  • Register with an Assessment Centre (SAVA A.C. is approved and ready to open now, there are others)
  • Take training on RDSAP (& probably other aspects of HCR)
  • Get assessed against the National Occupational Standards
  • Pass the ABBE Diploma in Home Inspection & register as a Home Inspector
  • Register with a Home Inspector Operator and Energy Certificate provider (may be the same organisation)
  • Undertake HCR inspections.. Voluntary basis from mid 2006, legally obligated from 2007
and opportunities for all
And opportunities for all
  • Directive requires certificates from Jan 2006
  • Energy Certificates for dwellings will be the first!
  • Commercial opportunities and career development
  • Consumer confidence is paramount
  • At last, a comprehensive and accurate information source on the UK’s building stock
  • A framework to allow fiscal incentives to be used to encourage take up of measures
  • Innovative off the shelf solutions for consumers, driven by EEC
  • We need to start now
more information from
More information from..

www.thehicb.org.uk

www.faero.co.uk

www.sava.org.uk

www.nher.co.uk

www.nesltd.co.uk

www.elmhurstenergy.co.uk