Building Regulation Changes: October 2015

August 6, 2015 7:42 am

There are amendments being introduced into the Building Regulations which come into force from 1st October 2015. These changes will directly impact the Approved Documents for G (Water efficiency), H (Waste Disposal), M (Access) and Q (Security). These will not only incorporate many new requirements for new housing but will also include a number of higher performance ‘Optional Building Regulations’.

To summarise just some of changes regarding each document:

Approved Document G

The proposed amendment gives individual planning departments the power to decide on a reduced water usage allowance. At the moment, the water usage per person per day is 125l in new dwellings, however, the amendment gives local planning departments the option to reduce this usage down to 110l per day depending on local requirements e.g. water shortages.

Approved Document H

Approved document H now requires paved areas in new dwellings be appropriately drained of storm water. This addition applies to any new dwelling built in accordance with Approved Document M.

Approved Document M

Approved document M will now be split into two:

Volume 1: Dwellings

Volume 2: Buildings other than dwellings

Volume 1 is then further categorised into three separate sections:

Category 1: Visitable dwellings:

Category 1 is very similar to M4 (1) laid out in the current guidelines.

Category 2: Accessible and adaptable dwellings

Category 3: Wheelchair user dwellings

Categories 2 and 3 apply only when required through planning permission. The decision of which category shall be decided by the Local Authority Planning Department. If the planning permission does not state a category, it should be assumed that there is no specific category for the dwellings and therefore, requirements for category 1 should be followed.

Introduction to Approved Document Q

October 2015 sees the introduction of new Approved Document Q. Document Q applies to new dwellings. It stipulates that “reasonable provision” must be made to resist any unauthorised access to any dwelling and also any parts of a building that access can be gained to a flat within that building.

This summary outlines just some of the amendments to the building regulations. For further information relating to any of the amendments or if you are unsure as to how this may affect you, please do not hesitate to contact Quadrant for a more thorough explanation.

For a full breakdown of the amended regulations, please visit:

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