New Build Energy Efficiency Compared to Older Homes

New build energy efficiency compared to older homes.

New build energy efficiency compared to older homes. Image Unsplash.

New build energy efficiency compared to older homes

With the economy in an uncertain place and bills rising, ensuring our homes are as energy efficient as possible has never been more important. Newly built homes are designed to be more energy efficient than older homes. 

According to a report by the Home Builders Federation in July 2023 found that on average new homes saved their owners £135 per month on energy bills which is a 55% saving. So what makes new build homes more energy efficient than older homes?


The UK government has recently updated building regulations to focus more on energy efficiency. When you are looking at insulating a new build, there are differences to be aware of. 

Insulation effectiveness is measured by its U-Value and the government regulations have increased the U-Value of all types of insulation to be compliant. The U-Value is the amount of heat lost from a particular area.

For example, under the new regulations, the maximum U-Value for a cavity wall is 0.3 whereas in older properties it was a maximum of 0.55 in 2013. 

Heating systems

New builds are built with new heating systems installed. They are up-to-date systems with the latest technology to make them as efficient as possible. When you compare them to older systems, the difference is clear.

Older heating systems that have been used for years tend to experience unavoidable wear and tear, meaning they will decrease in efficiency as they have to work harder to heat and use more energy to do so. 

Efficiency standards

The government regulations surrounding new builds were announced in December 2021 and have been applicable since June 2022, however there was a year-long grace period to make the necessary changes to your project planning. This means that if your building was approved by the planning department before 15th June 2022, the old regulations still apply. You must remember that you need to have started the building work by 15th June 2023 or the approval will have expired. 

As well as improved insulation and new heating systems, the regulations state that efficient lighting must be used and has set a new amount of glass needed in extensions. Overall, new build houses must have 30% less carbon emissions. 

What are the benefits to the buyer?

Buying a new build has many benefits for a buyer. New build houses are more efficient meaning lower heating and electricity bills monthly which are important in today’s climate. 

New builds also mean you will be living in a warmer and more comfortable home as they are insulated more than older homes. So you can rest assured that, thanks to the new government rules, your wallet and your comfort will benefit from a new build in the long run. 

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