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Building Codes and Standards for Construction Companies in the UK

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Rules are what make the world easier and more peaceful to live in. Without regulations, can you just imagine how messy and chaotic the whole planet will be? This is why industries of all shapes and sizes have their own rules to follow, and construction companies are no exception.

It doesn’t matter if the construction company specializes in new builds, remodels, or installations, all work done must adhere to the current building codes and standards.

Building Regulations: What are They?

To put it simply, building regulations are critical requirements for the construction, design, and changes of all buildings. The UK government is in charge of making these regulations which are then approved by the Parliament.

The most recent regulations for construction seek to achieve zero emissions of carbon dioxide or CO2 by the year 2050. These also include the reduction of buildings’ maximum emissions of CO2, as well as raising the bar for existing guidelines on ventilation, overheating, and fabric.

What’s Included in Building Codes and Standards? 

The standards and codes for construction companies in the UK cover several specific themes. These include structure integrity, accessibility, fire safety, fall protection, energy performance, gas safety, electrical safety, and acoustic performance.

The rules also set criteria for defence against water damage, protection from contaminants such as methane and radon, and ventilation.

The key objective of these rules is to protect and maintain the health, safety, and welfare of the people in and around the structures. They also aim to enhance and safeguard the environment, encourage more sustainable developments, and promote electricity and fuel conservation.

But construction companies should always keep in mind that the approved documents making up the building regulations are not permanent or unchanging. They also change every time there are changes to the housing policy. Several significant modifications have been rolled out recently, a testament that these standards are in no way static.

When Do Construction Companies Require Building Regulations Approval?

Approval for the building regulations is necessary when alterations or new structural work will be carried out.

Aside from this, work that involves the areas below will also require approval. However, there are some instances when competent experts can also certify the compliance of their works.

  • Cavity wall insulation
  • Drainage
  • Heat-producing appliances
  • New electrics

Every new home built must also follow the building regulations. This is the reason why a building control inspector must visit during the most crucial phases of the construction process to oversee the work and confirm that it complies accordingly.

The most important stages of a build include the following:

  • Excavation for foundations of the building
  • Pouring concrete for foundations
  • Building the oversite
  • Building the damp proof course or DPC
  • Drainage
  • A visit before the completion

The completion certificate will be issued after the final inspection.

Building Regulations That Construction Companies Should Meet

The primary exemptions for building regulations involve peripheral features such as detached garages, conservatories, or small porches with a maximum floor area of 30 square meters.

After securing the planning approval, the construction company should now focus on proving that the design will meet all the technical requirements.

The Building Regulations Approved Documents is made up of a series of comprehensive guidance manuals that range from A to S. These cover everything from fire and structure safety to electronic communications and security.

However, since these regulations are very extensive and exhaustive, a single article won’t be enough to cover everything. But you can always read them in full on the official website of Communities and Local Government.

To give you a good idea, construction companies are expected to comply with the following areas:

  • Structure (Part A)
  • Fire Safety (Part B)
  • Contamination and Damp (Part C)
  • Toxicity (Part D)
  • Sound (Part E)
  • Ventilation (Part F)
  • Hygiene (Part G)
  • Drainage (Part H)
  • Fuel  (Part J)
  • On-site Safety (Part K)
  • Conservation of Fuel and Power (Part L)
  • Access (Part M)
  • Glazing (Part N)
  • Overheating (Part O)
  • Electrics (Part P)
  • Infrastructure for Charging Electric Vehicles (Part S)

It is recommended to work with a building inspector who can guarantee that the project adheres to the building regulations for both residential projects such as extensions and conversions to the loft, but also any commercial constructions.

Wrapping It Up

Building codes and standards are put in place for a good reason. A responsible and trustworthy construction company in the UK will always follow these guidelines right from the beginning up to the completion of any project entrusted to their hands.

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