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Carbon, Circular economy, Construction, Embodied carbon, Industry, Kiss House, Sustainability, Sustainability issues, Timber  |  15 September 2020

The quality of new build housing.

Poor quality housing affects us all. The majority of us live with it and we all live with the detrimental effects it has on our environment.

New build housing in the UK.

The abysmal quality of new build housing in the UK is a widely reported and acknowledged travesty. For example, in a design audit of new developments in the UK since 2007 — The Bartlett Review found: 

  • 75% of new housing development should not have gone ahead due to “mediocre” or “poor” design 
  • 20% of developments should have been rejected outright by planning authorities 

 Things could be about to get even worse as Boris Johnson’s proposed recovery plan “ Build! Build! Build! could result in: 

  • Up to 45,000 new homes being built without raising efficiency standards 
  • 1 million new homes built previously left requiring expensive renovation to meet the target of net zero emissions by 2050,  according to the Committee on Climate Change 

Rebecca Newsom, head of politics at Greenpeace UK recently stated:

“Without any explicit rules insisting they meet zero-carbon standards, the government’s eagerness to build, build, build will only add to the escalating climate crisis and burden new home-owners with high heating bills and expensive retrofitting costs in years to come.” 

Transforming construction.

Construction accounts for 39% of global carbon emissions and sadly is an industry not well known for innovation.

In 2019 the World Green Building Council issued a rallying cry to the construction industry via a report entitled “Bringing embodied carbon upfront,” They called for:

““All actors across the whole value chain, to help transform the sector from a major cause into a major solution to the climate emergency.””

World Green Building Council

Their vision is a completely decarbonised construction sector with all actors adopting a leadership role before it’s too late. We instantly felt aligned. Since the start Kiss House has been ambitious to change housing for the better. Overtime how we’ll fulfil this ambition has developed.

In striving to make our houses as good as possible we have evolved our business model. Seeking new, better ways to do things for ourselves has led to the creation of new building materials and systems that solve problems faced by the house construction industry at large.  By harnessing the power of collaboration we have been able to innovate and to file our first two patent applications.

It was as a result of this work that two of our founders Mike Jacob and Carli Jordan spoke at the recent Timber 2020 conference. They considered the abysmal quality of new build housing, the need for change and disruption in the construction industry and explained how our new product innovations can play a key role.

You can find out more and watch the Timber 2020 presentation here on our new YouTube channel.

We hope you find it interesting. Please get in touch if you have any questions or want to know more.

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