Regulation L1b and what it means to you
Unless you’ve been living under a stone for most of your life, you will be aware that there is an increasing amount of concern about the way we live and the impact that it has on the environment and equally on the dwindling supplies of fossil fuels on which we are all so dependant. As part of a move towards limiting the damage we do to the planet, and therefore also to our own lifestyles, the government has been working to reduce our carbon emissions and conserve energy. As a result new rules, regulations and incentives have been put in place in many areas of our lives to encourage us to be more careful and building regulations are no exception.
Since April 2006, not only have building regulations changed in order that homes be better insulated and more energy efficient, but it is also a matter of legal necessity that homeowners who are to attempt a refurbishment of 50% or more of their flat roof space, also upgrade their insulation. The upshot of this is that if you are planning on having your flat roof refurbished, you absolutely must ensure that any work that is performed complies with the government’s ‘Conservation of Fuel in Existing Dwellings’ Act, otherwise known as the L1b regulations. To encourage you in the right direction the government has dropped VAT payments on this kind of work to just 5% thus cutting your costs by a full 15%. You should also note that to discourage you from taking the wrong path they have also introduced fines of up to £5000.
All of this may sound like a tremendous amount of responsibility to be placed on, you, the homeowners head. After all, you’re not a roofing contractor or an engineer, how are you supposed to know what’s being done to your roof and whether it is compliant to not? That’s not an unfair question to ask and the government recognises that, which is why they have empowered the National Federation of Roofing Contractors to set up the ‘Competent Roofer Scheme’ in order to ensure that you will always be able to locate a contractor who is up to date with the very latest building regulations and will make you aware of all your rights and responsibilities from the outset.