Renfrewshire Council

Building Regulations

Section one of the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 gives Scottish Ministers powers to create building regulations with respect to the design, construction, demolition and conversion of buildings and the provision of services, fittings and equipment in or in connection with buildings.

The term "construction" applies widely and includes alterations and extensions as well as new building. Generally, the building regulations will apply in full to these types of construction.

Conversions, however, are restricted to the prescribed changes of use or occupation as defined by Regulation 4 and Schedule 2 of the Building Regulations. Where an existing building is being converted the whole of the building must meet the building regulations, however, Regulation 12 and Schedule 6 recognise that it may not be reasonable practicable for existing buildings to meet the regulations in full and lists those standards where a lower level of provision may be sufficient.  

The building regulations are created for the following purposes;

  • Securing the health and safety, welfare and convenience of persons in or about buildings and of others who may be affected by buildings or matters connected with buildings,

  • furthering the conservation of fuel and power,

  • furthering the achievement of sustainable development.

The building regulations and the supporting guidance documents on how to meet the regulations are published in the form of Technical Handbooks and are available on the Scottish Government web site, you can find a link to this website under the Related Links Section on this page.

There are two Technical Handbooks, one covering domestic buildings the other for non-domestic buildings. The handbooks have been issued by Scottish Ministers for the purpose of providing practical guidance with respect to the requirements of the provisions of the building regulations.

Each handbook has eight sections, section 0 is common to both handbooks and covers general issues and sets out how and when the regulations apply to buildings and works.

Sections 1 - 7 give guidance on how to achieve the standards set by the regulations and there are different sets for domestic and non-domestic buildings. The seven sections are:

  • Section 1 Structure

  • Section 2 Fire

  • Section 3 Environment

  • Section 4 Safety

  • Section 5 Noise

  • Section 6 Energy

  • Section 7 Sustainability

Each of the seven sections consists of an introduction and then general guidance on the standards within the section. This is followed by each standard which has specific introductory information and guidance on how to comply with the standard.