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Building a house is a dream for many, but before embarking on the adventure, it is better to learn the right thing. The construction of a house must be done in compliance with a certain number of standards, which vary according to the region or the use of the dwelling. Although they may incur additional costs, thermal, seismic and accessibility regulations must be respected.

Building a house in standards

Building a house in standards

Thermal standards

Since January 2013, new houses must comply with the 2012 thermal regulations (RT 2012). This new standard aims to lower the energy consumption of the home and limit carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. The regulations concern heating, ventilation, lighting, hot water production and air conditioning.

One of the main points of RT 2012 is to eliminate thermal bridges, which can represent 30 to 40% of energy losses, thanks to efficient insulation.

A new thermal regulation is voted regularly. The RT 2020 will require new buildings to be positive energy.

Earthquake standards

Any new construction carried out in an area considered as "at risk" at the seismic level, must respect the seismic standards. The French territory is divided into 5 seismic zones, zone 1 having a very weak seismicity and zone 5, a strong seismicity.

Only constructions in zone 1 are spared by the seismic standards, the buildings built elsewhere on the French territory must comply with certain rules which concern the types of materials used as well as the techniques of construction.

Accessibility standards

Since 1 August 2006, a regulation requires new constructions dedicated to renting to adapt to any type of handicap.

The circulation inside the house must be easy and secure for a person in a wheelchair, so the floor must be flat and not slippery, there must be no steps and the corridors and doors must be of a minimum imposed width.

Windows, French windows and shutters must have a control located at a height between 0.90m and 1.30m from the ground.

A parking space of a minimum width of 3.30m must be within 30m of the dwelling.

For individual houses whose application for a building permit has been filed since January 1, 2008, at least one access must allow to go on the balcony or terrace with a wheelchair.

For single-family houses whose application for a building permit has been filed since January 1, 2010, the bathroom must be designed in such a way that a shower adapted for the disabled is easily adapted.


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