Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to the newest version of your browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of Construction News, please enable cookies in your browser.

Welcome to the Construction News site. As we have relaunched, you will have to sign in once now and agree for us to use cookies, so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Housing chief's warning

The race to comply with the Government’s zero carbon targets for new homes must not lead to consumers being used as “guinea pigs” for new technology, according to NHBC chief executive Imitiaz Faroohki.

Speaking at the Homing in on Zero Carbon conference at Ecobuild in Earls Court, west London, Mr Farookhi said new innovations had a critical role to play in meeting the 2016 targets.

He said: “Innovation should be based on sound science. Homeowners can and do suffer when the wrong technology is used. We need to guard against producing zero carbon houses that are detrimental to the people that buy them.”

Mr Farookhi said he believed that there was no technological magic bullet which would solve the challenges of the 2016 targets and added: “We should aim to give builders enough information to make informed decisions about technology. At the moment much of it is unproven.”

He added that many larger building companies had been quick to embrace the challenge of the targets. But he admitted many small and medium sized builders, who account for 40 per cent of the house building industry, had concerns over the unproven nature of the new technology as well as the higher costs involved.

He said: “The cost to construct a level 4 house will be and extra £6,000. For a level 6 it will be £35,000. Because of these costs many builders are reluctant to comply beyond levels 3 and 4.”