Decoding the Code - nine categories


Launched in late 2006, the Code for Sustainable Homes (CfSH) is the principal legislation which aims to drive forward the step change in building practices by setting new standards for the key elements of housing design and construction that affect the sustainability credentials of new homes.

Officially launched in December 2006, the Code for Sustainable Homes sets out new standards for energy efficiency and sustainability for housing in England.

The CfSH awards points for achieving criteria in each of the nine categories. The totalled points are then translated into credits.  The points are given different weightings.  The number of credits then denote a star rating (1 to 6).  The 9 categories are: 

1 - Energy and CO2 emissions
Level of carbon dioxide emmitted from operating the home (9 sub-categories)

2 - Water 
Potable water consumed from public supply or other ground water resources (2 sub-categories)

Brick and window frame - 18 February 20093 - Materials
The environmental impact of construction materials (3 sub-categories)

4 - Surface water run off
Changes in surface water run off as a result of the development (2 sub-categories) .

5 - Waste - as a result of the construction process and facilities for recycling of domestic waste (3 sub-categories)

6 - Pollution
As a result of the operation of the dwelling (2 sub-categories)

7 - Health and well being 
Effects that the dwelling's design and indoor environment has on its occupants (4 sub-categories) 

8 - Management
Management of the environmental impacts of construction and operation of the home (4 sub-categories).

9 - Ecology
impact of the dwelling on the local ecosystem, biodiversity and land use (5 sub-categories). 

It is now mandatory that all new homes are rated against the Code for Sustainable Homes criteria. A certificate stating the Code level or nil-rated should be included in Home Information Packs for potential buyers.

See more details on the nine categories
2016 Legislative Timeline
The Code on a page
Uncovering Code myths

Our Design Stage Targets
The CfSH Assessors


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Fact 24

Almost 150 MtCO2 could be saved if all dwellings inthe UK were zero-carbon.
Source: Energy Saving Trust 2008