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What is Code for Sustainable Homes (CSH)?

posted 29 Nov 2013, 01:10 by Unknown user   [ updated 14 Jan 2014, 00:31 ]
"Setting the standard in sustainability for new homes"
On 13 December 2006, the Department for Communities and Local Government launched the Code for Sustainable Homes (CSH) – a new national standard for sustainable design and construction of new homes. The Code for Sustainable Homes (CSH) is an environmental assessment method for rating and certifying the performance of new homes based on BRE Global's EcoHomes scheme. It is a Government owned national standard intended to encourage continuous improvement in sustainable home building.

What is evaluated under the Code for Sustainable Homes?
The Code measures the sustainability of a home against nine design categories, rating the ‘whole home’ as a complete package. The design categories are:

  • energy/carbon dioxide
  • water
    Code for Sustainable Homes Assessments
  • materials
  • surface water run-off
  • waste
  • pollution
  • health and well-being
  • management
  • ecology.


Each category includes a number of environmental issues which have a potential impact on the environment. The issues can be assessed against a performance target and awarded one or more credits. Performance targets are more demanding than the minimum standard needed to satisfy Building Regulations or other
legislation. They represent good or best practice, are technically feasible, and can be delivered by the building industry.

The Code uses a 1 to 6 star rating system to show the overall sustainability performance of a new home. It sets minimum standards for energy and water use at each level, which provides valuable information to home buyers and offers builders a tool with which to differentiate themselves in sustainability terms.

The levels of energy efficiency for the code (standard percentage better than Part L1A of the 2006 Building Regulations) are:

  • level 1 – 10%
  • level 2 – 18%
  • level 3 – 25%
  • level 4 – 44%
  • level 5 – 100%
  • level 6 – zero carbon.
When is the CSH needed?
The Code for Sustainable Homes assessment is mandatory for Housing Association dwellings. The local planning authority will require the Design-Stage Assessment, Pre-Assessment and Post-Construction Assessment. Some local authorities also require CSH standards to be met as a condition of planning approval.

Who can produce Code for Sustainable Homes Assessments?

A Code for Sustainable Homes assessor who is accredited through either BRE Global or Stroma accreditation.


For FREE advice and to arrange a free Code Pre-Assessment please call us on 01279 873380, email us at enquiries@sestesting.com or fill out the enquiry form.

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