Housebuilding starts slowed as sector got to grips with changes to Part L, according to analysts.

Housing starts dropped this summer as housebuilders got to grips with new energy efficiency regulations, according to Glenigan.

The market analysts’ index shows residential starts fell 12% in the three months to the end of July compared with the same period in 2021. Social housing starts fell 22% over the same period. The index, which covers projects with a total value of £100m or less, also showed private starts fell by 8% year-on-year.

Allan Wilen,  economic director at Glenigan, suggested the drop was due to housebuilders getting used to changes to Part L of the building regulations which came into effect on 15 June. The updated regulation requires new homes to achieve an overall reduction in carbon emissions of 31% as an interim measure towards meeting the more stringemt Future Homes Standard.

Willen said: “Residential developers [now need] to ensure new buildings meet strict energy use standards required by the introduction of Part L, reducing carbon emissions by 31%. 

“As many get to grips with the specifics of this new regulation, and futureproof their assets to comply with other aspects of the Future Homes Standard, a quieter July was inevitable and could carry into August.”

>> On demand webinar: Part L: What do the changes mean for the sector?

Glenigan believes developers bringing forward projects to avoid the new regulations that came into effect in June may also have been a factor in the decrease.

The index is created from Glenigan’s own research, which tracks sites from the pre-planning to completion. Its figures are seasonally adjusted.