What are building regulations?

Building Regulations ensure all notifiable building works comply with the protection of health, safety and welfare and convenience of persons in and about buildings. As well as the conservation of fuel and power and access to and within buildings for the provision of facilities for people with disabilities.

Effective from 1 October 2010, the legislation is the Building Regulations 2010, made by the Secretary of State for the Environment, under powers delegated by Parliament under the Building Act 1984. These Regulations are basic performance standards. One way of showing compliance with the Regulations is to follow the guidance in the Approved documents:

  • Structure: Approved Document A on GOV.UK.
  • Fire safety: Approved Document B on GOV.UK.
  • Site preparation and resistance to contaminants and moisture: Approved Document C on GOV.UK.
  • Toxic Substances: Approved Document D on GOV.UK.
  • Resistance to sound: Approved Document E on GOV.UK.
  • Ventilation: Approved Document F on GOV.UK.
  • Sanitation, hot water safety and water efficiency: Approved Document G on GOV.UK.
  • Drainage and waste disposal: Approved Document H on GOV.UK.
  • Combustion appliances and fuel storage systems: Approved Document J on GOV.UK.
  • Protection from falling, collision and impact: Approved Document K on GOV.UK.
  • Conservation of fuel and power: Approved Document L on GOV.UK.
  • Access to and use of buildings: Approved Document M on GOV.UK.
  • Electrical safety: Approved Document P on GOV.UK.
  • Security in dwellings: Approved Document Q on GOV.UK.
  • High speed electronic communications networks: Approved Document R on GOV.UK.
  • Material and workmanship: Approved Document 7 on GOV.UK.

If, however, an approved document has not been complied with, this does not necessarily mean that the work does not comply. You can design and construct your building in accordance with a number of different standards, the British Standards being the main alternative.