The National House-Building Council (NHBC) Foundation is publishing two new guides today, designed to help housebuilders and designers understand what is needed to comply with Part L.

According to NHBC, complying with Part L – conservation of fuel and power in new dwellings – is one of the most complex challenges faced by the housebuilding industry. Its guides build on NHBC Foundation guidance first published in 2011, covering the two most common forms of construction: masonry and timber frame.

They contain greater detail on the topic of thermal bridging, such as the heat loss that occurs around window openings and at the junctions between building elements. As a first stage in the design process, housebuilders and designers must now decide how to deal with thermal bridging before other specification choices can be made in relation to insulation, airtightness, services and renewables.

Neil Smith, head of research and innovation at NHBC, said: “The guides provide a useful starting point for designing new homes to Part L 2013. Many in the industry struggle to get to grips with the complexities of Part L and we hope these new, clear and simple guides help will help to build an understanding.

“Presented mainly as tables and construction details, this guidance should be of particular use to smaller firms who may not be as aware of the range of options available to them to satisfy Part L.”

Stephen Williams MP, Minister for Communities, added: “The government recognises the technical challenges that builders face in this area, which is why these publications from the National House-Building Council are to be welcomed.”