When did you last update your home user guide templates?
As we approach mid-decade; new home energy efficiency and performance has been a key focus of building regulation this decade with Part L, Part O, Part F; Futures Homes Standards, and the road to net zero a key priority for residential housebuilders, developers and landlords alike. Homebuyers too continue to be concerned with energy efficiency and the cost of living impact.
With this emphasis on sustainable and energy-efficient living, one area where we often see Home User Guides can be improved is in the provision of home energy guide and energy performance certificates for new homeowners. More broadly, we often see that the quality of the new homeowner handover packs and customer experience does not do the quality of the new homes being delivered justice.
This blog post takes a closer look at Home Energy Guide requirement as part of the home handover process – and the benefits of using Guided Home to quickly implement best practices for new home user guides, information sharing, and defect management.
By ensuring compliance and delivering real value to your homebuyers through an interactive handover experience on Guided Home, you can effectively address the needs of a sustainable and energy-efficient lifestyle.
Understanding Building Regulations
The United Kingdom’s building regulations, specifically Part L (Conservation of Fuel and Power), Part O (Overheating), and Part F (Ventilation), collectively dictate the standards that new homes must meet to ensure energy efficiency, proper ventilation, and thermal comfort. There is also the Future Homes Standard and the drive to net zero to consider. Compliance with these regulations is crucial for builders and developers to create homes that align with the nation’s commitment to sustainability.
The Role of Home Energy Guides
As an integral component of the building regulations, the Home Energy Guide serves as a comprehensive manual for new homeowners. Its purpose is to provide non-technical advice on operating and maintaining the home in an energy-efficient manner, with a focus on ventilation, heating, renewable energy, and strategies for staying cool in hot weather.
Essential Components of a Home Energy Guide
- Ventilation: The guide should explain the principles of both passive and mechanical ventilation, including the use of trickle vents or other background vents. It should also include operating and maintenance instructions from manufacturers relevant to healthy and energy-efficient ventilation.
- Heating and Domestic Hot Water: A detailed overview of the heating system, domestic hot water, and associated equipment should be included. This section should cover the operation and maintenance instructions for components such as air source heat pumps, heat interface units, circulation pumps, control units, room thermostats, and heating timers.
- Renewable Energy: For homes equipped with renewable energy sources such as solar panels (PV panels), the guide should explain their role and provide instructions for optimal operation and maintenance.
- Staying Cool in Hot Weather: Strategies for maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature during hot weather should be outlined, including the use of solar shading devices and other relevant measures.
- Annotated Floor Plans and Equipment Locations: Simple annotated floor plans, external elevations, and roof layouts should be included to help homeowners identify key equipment locations within the dwelling, such as MVHR units, air source heat pumps, heating system components, PV panels, and energy meters.
Why Compliance Matters
Compliance with building regulations is not just a legal requirement; it also demonstrates a commitment to sustainable and energy-efficient living. Homebuyers are increasingly conscious of environmental impact and energy costs, making compliance a valuable selling point for builders and developers.
Guided Home: Your Compliance Solution
Guided Home offers a comprehensive platform that streamlines the process of creating and delivering Home User Guides. With customizable templates and example text aligned with building regulations, builders and developers can ensure compliance effortlessly. The platform provides a user-friendly interface, allowing for quick updates and customisation of Home User Guides to suit specific development and plot specifications so you can be sure homeowners receive relevant, accurate and useful information.
In an era where sustainability and energy efficiency are paramount, housebuilders and developers must digitise their Home User Guides and customer experience if they are to efficiently comply with the latest standards and best practices. Guided Home partners with housebuilders to ensure operational efficiency, compliance and control for your teams but also enhances your brand and overall customer experience for new home buyers.
Guided Home’s new home handover, defect and aftercare compliance platform not only simplifies the process but also ensures that every homeowner receives the information they need for a healthy and energy-efficient living environment.
As the industry continues to embrace technology and consumer protections, being able to deliver customised, high quality, compliant home user guides at scale becomes not just a necessity but a strategic move towards a greener, sustainable future and happier customers.
About Guided Home
Guided Home is the integrated new home handover, defect and aftercare solution. Used by fast growing, customer-centric residential developers, housebuilders and landlords delivering new homes and apartments for sale, shared ownership and rent. Our platform connects housebuilders with their customers like never before with one easy to use platform for customer information sharing that transforms the customer experience.
To efficiently provide a high quality, professional and compliant customer experience, connect your teams, data and customers with Guided Home.
Learn more at www.GuidedHome.co