The Good Homes Alliance (GHA) has announced a call for net zero new-build housing case studies, in order to share best practice and learning within its fast-growing membership network and wider industry.

Funding has been received from the MCS Charitable Foundation to create this much-needed resource, with up to 15 detailed case studies set to be developed and showcased widely via the GHA’s Build Net Zero NOWcampaign in the lead up to COP26 in November 2021.

As stated in our Manifesto, we believe a holistic approach to sustainable housing development is required to build homes ‘fit for the future’. Medium to large scale housing projects that not only showcase an innovative net zero or ultra-low energy approach, but consider health & wellbeing, embodied carbon and placemaking aspects, are preferred.

In addition to new case studies, funding from the Foundation is contributing towards the development of model clauses for Employer’s Requirements, that will allow clients such as local authorities and housing associations to set progressive targets for net zero housing, building performance and health & wellbeing outcomes.

These new resources will be vital in supporting the work of the GHA’s ever-growing local authority Vanguard and housing association Pathfinder networks, totalling over 25 members that are set to build 120,000 new homes over the next 10 years.

Net zero, ‘net zero-ready’ or ultra-low energy new build housing projects

Case study projects can be aiming for a definition of net zero (i.e. UKGBC, LETI, Passivhaus Plus definitions); be ‘net zero-ready’ – homes with excellent fabric efficiency and a ‘future-proofed’ building services setup (such as a heat pump) so that full operational net zero can be achieved when the grid decarbonises.

A range of projects and approaches

We are looking for a range of projects and approaches; at different stages (planning, design, construction, completion); and construction types (e.g. mass timber, timber frame, MMC, traditional). Larger scale multi-dwelling schemes are preferred to one-off houses.

A commitment to building performance evaluation

Projects that have made a commitment towards building performance evaluation and verification are preferred. If performance monitoring data is not currently available but there are ambitions to gather this information, GHA aim to periodically contact project teams to collect this information and update case studies accordingly.

How to get involved – Short pro-forma document

Those interested in submitting a case study are asked to complete a short pro-forma document, stating key information about the project such as a summary of sustainability credentials, project location, number of dwellings and project stage. To ensure an even spread of project and construction types, case studies will undergo a selection process by the GHA team.

Holistic case study criteria – Energy efficiency, health & wellbeing and more

If successful, applicants will be asked to provide further information on a range of holistic sustainability issues, including energy efficiency targets (and monitoring results), embodied carbon data, material specifications and health & wellbeing aspects – occupant comfort, mitigating overheating, indoor air quality and more.

The GHA team will be on hand to assist applicants through the information gathering process and will also conduct interviews to collect qualitative information on the decision-making processes throughout the project.

Application process

  1. Click here to download the proforma template. Complete and return to by 16th May 2021.
  2. We will be in touch with chosen applicants in mid/late May to ask you to complete a detailed case study template.
  3. We will conduct interviews and work with you to gather the required information over the summer, with a first draft due in July.
  4. We aim to finalise and publish all case studies by September 2021, in time for the GHA 2021 Conference and COP26 activities in the autumn.

To find out more about this workstream, please contact Richard Broad, Projects & Communications Manager, Good Homes Alliance –


Thank you to the MCS Charitable Foundation for their support.

Call for net zero housing case studies!

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