2nd Edition

Designed to Perform An Illustrated Guide to Delivering Energy Efficient Homes

By Tom Dollard Copyright 2022
    224 Pages
    by RIBA Publishing

    How do we ensure sustainable buildings perform as intended? The performance gap between predicted and actual energy use in new homes has been identified as key problem by government and industry experts. This updated edition is an illustrated practical design guide to delivering better energy performance in all types of new build homes. It introduces readers to the concept of the performance gap and highlights clear issues and solutions to help architects improve their detailing at design stage. The book:

    • Features annotated details with photos taken from live construction sites
    • Includes accessible practical guidance for busy practitioners
    • Raises construction quality and performance of new homes
    • Promotes the case for more architect supervision throughout the construction process

    A new chapter features innovative low carbon building methods, including hempcrete blocks, clay blocks and straw bale. All information has been updated to reflect the latest data with fresh details and technologies.

    How to use this book



    1. The performance gap and how to reduce it

    2. How to detail a thermally efficient building envelope

    3. Masonry – cavity wall construction

    4. Concrete frame construction

    5. Timber frame construction

    6. Insulated concrete formwork

    7. Off-site construction

    8. Natural building materials

    9. Building services performance

    10. How to deliver improved performance

    Appendix 1. Site inspection checklist

    Appendix 2. Designed to Perform checklist

    Appendix 3. Thermal conductivity assumptions


    Tom Dollard is Partner of Sustainability and Innovation at Pollard Thomas Edwards (PTE). He is a core trainer for the Green Register of Construction Professionals and a Director of the Good Homes Alliance. He is a certified Passivhaus designer, BREEAM and Code for Sustainable Homes Assessor. Tom leads the design and site review process for the UK Government’s ‘Building for 2050’.