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Changes to legislation and guidance for December 2022: letter to local authority verifiers

Guidance to local authority verifiers on changes to legislation and guidance in force from 1 December 2022.


By email:

Chief Executives of Scottish Local Authorities

Copy to:

Local Authority Building Standards Managers

Your ref: -

Our ref: A38999162

4 July 2022

Dear Chief Executive,

Changes to guidance for December 2022 – Building (Scotland) Act 2003: Sections 4(2) and 4(4) Notice relating to guidance documents

I am writing to advise you of changes being introduced to published guidance within the Building Standards Technical Handbooks that should be applied from 1 December 2022. A summary of the changes is attached in Annex A.

The Technical Handbooks are published electronically in pdf format. Full details of the changes to guidance and the 2022 Technical Handbooks are published on gov.scot.

The Amended 2022 Technical Handbooks for domestic and non-domestic buildings apply from 1 December 2022 and the notice issued by the Scottish Ministers under sections 4(2) and 4(4) of the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 is attached in Annex B.

Verifiers should consider the receipt of applications for building warrant carefully to avoid incomplete applications being submitted to circumvent compliance with the revised standards and guidance.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Stephen Garvin

Head of Building Standards

Annex A

Summary of changes to legislation and guidance applicable from 1 December 2022

Legislation

The Building (Scotland) Regulations 2004 which set out functional standards for buildings are amended. Parts 1 and 3 of the above amendment regulations apply from 1 December 2022. The Building (Scotland) Amendment (Amendment) Regulations 2022 amend Part 1 and the date of application of Part 3 of the amendment regulations from 1 October 2022 to 1 December 2022.

Part 3 of the regulations introduces the following amendments to The Building (Scotland) Regulations 2004:

  • a definition for ‘direct emissions heating system’ is introduced to regulation 2 (interpretation)
  • a new standard 3.28 (overheating) is introduced to schedule 5 (building standards applicable to design and construction) and to schedule 6 (building standards applicable to conversions).
  • in schedule 5, standard 6.1 is retitled “Energy demand and carbon dioxide emissions”, scope extended to limit energy demand and the requirement to limit carbon dioxide emissions is no longer applied to buildings without ‘direct emissions heating systems’
  • in schedule 5, standard 6.7 (commissioning building services) is amended to cover ‘control systems’ and include ‘effective operation’ as a function of commissioning

Guidance (new/updated)

  • Building Standards Technical Handbook – Domestic (December 2022)

Description

Amendments to regulations and standards as noted above. Changes to published guidance:

  • clause 3.12.2 ventilation of dwellings. Guidance expanded to cover ventilation solutions for design infiltration levels and advice on whole dwelling ventilations rates
  • clause 3.14.3 provision for purge ventilation. New clause expanding advice on openable ventilators previously in ‘ventilation of dwellings’
  • clauses 3.12.4 to 3.12.6 – expanded guidance on the three principle options for ventilation of dwellings, relating solutions to design infiltration levels
  • clause 3.14.8 commissioning and written information. New clause summarising provisions previously set out in the (referenced) domestic ventilation guide
  • new standard 3.28 (overheating) and supporting guidance introduced on assessment and mitigation of summer overheating risk in new dwellings
  • new Annex 3.A added to the Domestic Handbook. This is an updated version of the ‘Domestic Ventilation Guide’ which was previously published as a separate document
  • clause 6.1.1 – explanation of new energy target and exemption from TER for non-direct emission heating systems. Confirmation of application of SAP 10 as the current version of the UK assessment methodology
  • clause 6.1.2 – Amendment to the notional buildings used to set compliance targets. Three variations on the notional building, applied based upon use of electric heat pump, heat network connection or any other heating solution
  • clause 6.1.3 – explanation of revised treatment of the export component of on-site generation of power and of the amended approach to compliance for dwellings connected to a heat network.
  • note: ‘Simplified approach’ to compliance with standard 6.1 (build to notional building specification, no SAP compliance calculation needed) is now removed as an option
  • clause 6.2.1 – Area-weighted average U-values for elements of fabric improved. One set of values now apply to all building work. Option of demonstrating compliance of new buildings via ‘space heating demand limit’ set out
  • clause 6.2.5 – airtightness testing now undertaken on each new dwelling. No exception for high infiltration dwellings. Test methodology refers to CIBSE TM 23
  • clause 6.2.6 – reference now made to fabric values in clause 6.2.1 for conversion of heated and unheated buildings. A robust demonstration of ‘reasonably practicable’ solutions is sought
  • clause 6.2.8, 6.2.10, 6.2.11 and 6.2.12 – reference now made to fabric values in clause 6.2.1
  • clause 6.3.1, 6.4.1, 6.5.1 and 6.6.2 – reference now made to the 2022 Domestic Building Services Compliance Guide
  • clause 6.6.1 – assessment of overheating risk now references provisions set out in standard 3.28 for dwellings
  • clause 6.7.2 added on provision of a commissioning plan at design stage
  • clause 6.7.3 added on provision of a commissioning report on completion of construction
  • clause 6.8.2 updated to include information on avoiding overheating risk within the ‘quick start guide’
  • clause 6.8.3 added setting out provisions for information to support retrofit of direct emission heating systems
  • previous Annex 6.A now deleted. Other annexes renumbered
  • annex 6.A – Examples updated to reflect changes to guidance to standard 6.2
  • clause 7.1.4 - Guidance on achieving Aspect 1 (Carbon Dioxide Emissions) updated to reflect 2022 emission standards. References now made to SAP 10 as calculation methodology
  • clause 7.1.6 - Guidance on achieving Aspect 1 (Carbon Dioxide Emissions) updated to reflect 2022 emission standards
  • appendix A – defined terms updated

Revised and updated handbook.

Guidance (new/updated)

  • Building Standards Technical Handbook – Non-Domestic (December 2022)

Description

Amendments to regulations and standards as noted above. Changes to published guidance:

  • clause 3.14.8 commissioning and written information. New clause summarising provisions previously set out in the (referenced) domestic ventilation guide
  • new standard 3.28 (overheating) and supporting guidance on assessment and mitigation of summer overheating risk in certain new residential buildings introduced
  • clause 6.1.1 –Confirmation of application of SBEM v.6 as the current version of the UK assessment methodology
  • clause 6.1.2 – explanation of new energy target and exemption from TER for non-direct emission heating systems
  • clause 6.1.4 – Amendment to the notional buildings used to set compliance targets. Three variations on the notional building, applied based upon use of electric heat pump, heat network connection or any other heating solution
  • clause 6.1.6 – explanation of revised treatment of the export component of on-site generation of power and amended approach to heat network connections
  • clause 6.1.8 – amended guidance on shell buildings, emphasising the application of a continuing requirement on fit-out and deferring EPC assessment until completion of fit-out
  • clause 6.2.1 – Area-weighted average U-values for elements of fabric improved. One set of values now apply to all building work. Variant U-values for shell buildings no longer defined (clause removed)
  • clause 6.2.4 – Where input values not used, default allowance for thermal bridging in notional building amended
  • clause 6.2.6 – reduced exceptions for testing of new buildings. Test methodology refers to is now CIBSE TM 23
  • clause 6.2.7 – reference now made to fabric values in clause 6.2.1 for conversion of heated and unheated buildings. A robust demonstration of ‘reasonably practicable’ solutions is sought.
  • clause 6.2.8, 6.29 and 6.2.11 – qualified reference now made to fabric values in clause 6.2.1
  • clause 6.3.1, 6.4.1, 6.5.1 and 6.6.2 – Reference now made to the 2022 Non-domestic Building Services Compliance Guide
  • clause 6.6.1 – now references provisions set out in standard 3.28 for residential non-domestic buildings
  • clause 6.7.2 added on provision of a commissioning plan at design stage
  • clause 6.7.3 added on provision of a commissioning report on completion of construction
  • clause 6.8.2 updated to include information on avoiding overheating risk within the quick start guide
  • clause 6.8.3 added setting out provisions for information to support retrofit of direct emission heating systems
  • previous Annex 6.A now deleted. Other annexes renumbered
  • annex 6.A – Examples updated to reflect changes to guidance to standard 6.2
  • annex 6.B – Provisions specific to limited duration modular buildings updated
  • clause 7.1.6 - Guidance on achieving Aspect 1 (Carbon Dioxide Emissions) updated to reflect 2022 emission standards. References now made to SAP 10 as calculation methodology
  • clause 7.1.9 - Guidance on achieving Aspect 1 (Carbon Dioxide Emissions) updated to reflect 2022 emission standards
  • appendix A – defined terms updated

See revised and updated handbook.

Guidance (new/updated)

  • Building Standards Technical Handbook – Summary of December 2022 Changes

Description

See policy page.

Annex B

Building (Scotland) Act 2003: Sections 4(2) and 4(4) notice relating to guidance documents

Issue of guidance documents

Under the provisions of Section 4(1) of the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 (the Act), which came into force on 1 May 2005, Scottish Ministers may issue guidance documents for the purposes of providing practical guidance with respect to the requirements of any provision of building regulations and may issue revisions of the whole or any part of any guidance document. 

Guidance documents issued under Section 4(1) of the Act take effect in accordance with a notice issued by Scottish Ministers under Section 4(2) of the Act.

This letter, issued on behalf of Scottish Ministers, constitutes such a notice.

From 1 December 2022, the following revised documents are guidance documents for the purpose of building regulations:

  • The Scottish Building Standards Technical Handbooks – Domestic 2022 (December 2022 Edition), and
  • The Scottish Building Standards Technical Handbooks – Non-Domestic 2022 (December 2022 edition)

These guidance documents introduced changes within section 0 (general), section 3 (environment), section 6 (energy), section 7 (sustainability) and Appendix A (defined terms) of the Technical Handbooks. 

The guidance documents are issued with respect to the provisions of the Building (Scotland) Regulations 2004, as amended to 22 April 2022.

The Building (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2020 (SSI 2020 No. 275) are amended by The Building (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2022, SSI 2022 No.136 and The Building (Scotland) Amendment (Amendment) Regulations 2022, SSI 2022 No.209.

Withdrawal of guidance documents

As provided for by Section 4(3) and 4(4) of the Act, the previous June 2022 Technical Handbooks, Domestic and Non-Domestic, shall cease to have effect in relation to building warrant applications made under section 9 of the Act and completion certificates submitted under section 17(4) of the Act after 30 November 2022.

Contact

T: 0131 244 6533

E: stephen.garvin@gov.scot

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