Without even getting into the detail of what LPS 2020, the new performance standard for modern methods of construction, will or won't deliver (5 May, page 52), one has to consider the basics:

  • The components would have to be tested to meet the stakeholder requirements
  • The whole scheme design would have to support the use of the innovative components
  • The on-site inspection would have to be built into the process to maintain quality.
But even before we can address these issues, we have to ensure stakeholder buy-in. And in speaking to the individual mortgage lenders, it soon becomes apparent that relying on a commercial organisation's third-party assessment for the purpose of their own valuation holds little appeal.

It wouldn't be the first time that a standard has been written without it being used, and it certainly wouldn't be the first time that a process has been introduced without stakeholder buy-in. Indeed, home information packs are starting to present the industry with similar challenges.

Some of the major lenders have had little to do with LPS 2020, some of them have doubts as to whether or not it will deliver, and some will take an objective view on whether or not it meets their needs, as and when it finally arrives. But above all, there is consensus that it would have to meet the three basic criteria listed above. Given that LPS 2020 currently takes only one of those criteria into account, it's clearly some way off from responding to stakeholder needs.

David Osrin, Building LifePlans