Future Homes Standard – Case Study: Eco Drive Handsworth

Midland Heart Housing Association and Birmingham City University have worked together to construct Eco Drive, the first at scale demonstrator for the Future Homes Standard. Constructed by Bromsgrove based Tricas, in Handsworth Birmingham, the homes were first occupied in June 2022 and the research team now have 12 months data from sensors and occupier interviews. From the outset Project 80 team, determined to put the Home  Occupier at the heart of the journey. With the imminent publication of the Technical Consultation into the Future Homes Standard, the findings of this report into the construction and lived experience will have significant impact on the future of new homes in England.

Housing developers have a crucial role to play in ensuring the UK meets it net zero emissions targets by 2050. The houses have been built to the UK government’s 2025 Future Homes Standard and have been lived in for the past year by real people living their real lives. Birmingham City University have the unique opportunity to share data, insights, and feedback from residents, that will help policy makers, the housing industry and its supply chain meet more stringent regulations.  The interim research will demonstrate what more needs to be done to help people adapt to living in new homes and most-effectively use the new technologies they contain, in order to live more efficient and greener lives.

The headline findings are that Midland Heart standard house types were successfully adapted to meet the new standard with SAP calculations showing an 80 to 90% reduction in carbon emissions. And that data from real-life occupancy, shows these houses can operate with up to a 70% reduction in carbon emissions with small cost savings against the same houses with gas heating.

This report contains a summary of our demonstration project, including a highly effective partnership with industry, suppliers, and residents, the specifications of the houses built, a snapshot of their daily and monthly energy use, and recommendations for policymakers and industry.

Download the full report here:  PROJECT 80 - ECO DRIVE HANDSWORTH