NHBC Standards 2017

standards 2017

The 2017 NHBC Standards will come into force for every new home registered with NHBC on sites where foundations are begun on or after 1 January 2017.

The 2017 edition includes a brand new Chapter 6.11 on render as well as changes to other chapters.

A fully updated version of the Standards for 2017 is only available online as Standards Plus 2017. A hard copy book is not being produced.

Existing hard copy Standards users will receive:

  • a hard copy of the new Chapter 6.11
  • a copy of Technical Extra 21 which provides a quick summary of the changes to other parts of the Standards.

We would recommend all Standards users refer to the online Standards Plus 2017 to familiarise themselves with the new technical requirements in all updated Chapters.


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For more information or technical support, you can give us a call or send us an email.

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NHBC Standards Plus 2017 - free for all

Standards Plus is a fully interactive digital version of the NHBC Standards that includes a range of supplementary technical information and interactive elements. Standards Plus is freely available to all - no login details required.

Use quick-launch Standards Plus to browse or use the table below to select the part of the house-building process you're interested in.


New and revised technical guidance notes for December 2016

Click here to see what's new.

What's new in Standards 2017?

Here is an overview of the more significant changes, please take time to familiarise yourself with the updated technical content.

Chapter 3.3:

Timber preservation (natural solid timber)

  • Table 1 has been updated to recognise the use of water-based organic preservatives as an acceptable timber treatment.

Chapter 5.4:

Waterproofing of basements and other below ground structures

  • The introduction of Chapter 5.4 marked a significant step in helping to drive standards and bring about improvement in this area. Helping the industry to get this critical part of the build right, and reduce the significant rate of failure identified through our claims activities, remains one of our top priorities.
  • To help provide further clarity on what is required to comply, a number of minor updates have been made to this chapter.

Chapter 6.1:

External masonry walls

  • Stone veneer cladding systems come in a number of forms. Typically they are either natural or reconstituted stone and can either be directly applied to masonry substrates with mechanical fixings or adhesive, or applied as a slip system on a backing board.
  • Standards 2017 introduces guidance that will help to ensure that only suitable systems with appropriate verification of likely performance are used in the construction of homes with NHBC warranty.

Chapter 6.11:

Render and rendering systems

  • Standards 2017 includes the launch of this new chapter which will set benchmark standards and provide helpful guidance for the application of render and rendering systems.

The chapter considers a range of commonly used types of render, including:

    • factory-made render;
    • site-mixed render;
    • render on to board backgrounds.

Chapter 7.1:

Flat roofs and balconies

  • For many years NHBC Standards have led the way in ensuring that balconies are only constructed with suitably durable materials. Further recognising the importance of getting this right, revised guidance for the use of timber in balcony constructions is introduced.

Chapter 7.2:

Pitched roofs

  • In addition to the current guidance in the NHBC Standards, supporting documents to building regulations and other authoritative resources, Standards 2017 includes an option for fixing lateral restraint straps to longitudinal binders.
  • A number of smaller amendments have been made to ensure that the chapter is consistent and in alignment with the latest version of BS 5534.

Chapter 8.1:

Internal services

  • We have come across a number of designs where ventilation terminals have been concealed behind rainscreen cladding panels. This has led to questions about the performance of the ventilation system and durability of surrounding materials.
  • To address this, Standards 2017 contains guidance making it clear that extract terminals from ventilation systems should discharge to open air.

Chapter 10.2:

Drives, paths and landscaping

  • The guidance for the preparation of garden areas found in sections 10.2.8 and 10.2.9 has been updated and includes new guidance on how to ensure that appropriate action, such as rotavating, is undertaken to restore the drainage characteristics of soil that has been compacted during construction.

Previous versions of NHBC Standards

The NHBC Standards online archive contains issues going back to 2006. Select a specific year below:

NHBC Technical Extra

Technical Extra provides the latest advice and guidance on NHBC Standards and Building Regulations.


Technical Guidance Documents

There are 150 Technical Guidance Documents, organised by NHBC Standards chapter, to help you interpret and apply NHBC Standards.  


NHBC Risk Guides

NHBC Risk Guides cover particular parts of the construction process and are issued to our building inspectors who’ll use them as a basis for discussion with you.



We've developed two digital Apps to help you interpret the NHBC Standards

The Foundation Depth Calculator works out the correct foundation depths when building near trees to make sure you comply with Chapter 4.2. The 3D Viewer App enables you to use the 3D models that are new this year in NHBC Standards 2016.