In-Use /

00 General

Information correct as of 22ndJune 2024. Please see kb.breeam.com for the latest compliance information.

Assessor comments submitted within BREEAM In-Use assessments - KBCN0962

Assessor comments are an extremely important part of the certification process, and are used to give the Quality Assurance (QA) team at BRE Global an understanding on why the Assessor has awarded credits. Assessor comments must be provided for any question which has credits awarded. The comments must provide the following information: In situations where the client has submitted detailed comments (on the client side of the tool) which already outlines all of the relevant information noted above, then the Assessor can simply provide a shortened comment verifying the accuracy of the client comment. Note: Assessor comments must be written in English in order for the QA team to review the assessment. Where the majority of the information is provided within the client side, then this also needs to be in English, or simply translated over within the Assessor comments. Example of compliant Assessor comments (related to HEA 01 – SD221 – 2.0:2015) “2 credits have been awarded as 20% of the building envelope is glazed. Verification of this figure can be seen within the calculation provided within [insert evidence name]. Please also find photographic evidence of each side of the envelope [insert evidence name], as well as the drawings for each envelope which the calculations were based on [insert evidence name]."

BREEAM In-Use Platform Migration – FAQs - KBCN1598

  1. Why have we made this change?
This is intended to provide a better user experience for both Clients and Assessors. The BREEAM Projects platform is faster and more stable than the BREEAM In-Use platform, reducing the risk of data loss. Unifying our schemes on a single platform will also allow us to be provide new features that can benefit all users.
  1. Will this change the current process?
There are some small changes to the appearance and functionality of the system and how you access the platform. However, this should not result in a significant change to how you work.
  1. Will this improve Operational or QA timescales?
Currently, the QA workflow for BREEAM In-Use assessments is primarily a manual process. After its migration onto the BREEAM Projects platform, the QA process will be carried out using the online tool, leading to improved efficiency in the QA assessment workflow and more streamlined processing of QA submissions.
  1. Will my login details change?
There will be no change to the login details for either BREEAM In-Use or BREEAM Projects users.
  1. Do I need additional training to use the new system?
We have designed the tool to maintain the functionality of the BIU platform. There will be some differences in the user interface, however additional training should not be necessary. We will be sharing a system user guide in June 2023 for further support.
  1. Will active assessments be moved over?
Yes, assessments that are currently in-progress will be moved over.
  1. Will previously certified assessments be moved over?
Yes, assessments that are already certified will be moved over.
  1. Will I be able to see the evidence for all my assets in the new platform?
All the assets and evidence will be transferred to the BREEAM Projects platform and will work just as they did in the BREEAM In-Use platform. However, please remember that the BREEAM License terms and conditions require Assessor organisations to maintain complete and accurate records of the assessment documentation for a period of ten years. BRE only uses the evidence provided for the purpose of auditing and making a certification decision. We do not keep all assessment evidence once certification has been completed. Please ensure that you maintain your assessment records locally to prevent loss and to meet BRE’s terms of service.
  1. Will my existing credits within the BREEAM In-Use platform be moved over?
Yes, all existing credits within the BREEAM In-Use Platform will be moved onto the BREEAM Projects Platform as part of the data migration process.
  1. Will I be able to still access BIU platform after migration?
No. The BREEAM In-Use platform will be retired after the migration has been completed.
  1. Is the BREEAM Projects platform available in different languages?
Yes. There is an option to switch languages within the platform. This will change the display language of the interface and, where supported, within the technical guidance This will be available in the following languages:
  1. Will it be possible to request an invoice for BIU credits in BREEAM Projects?
The payments process for purchasing BREEAM In-Use credits will not change. It will still be possible to purchase BIU credits using a credit/debit card, as well as being able to request an invoice via a cost proposal.
  1. Is the log in process the same for Clients and Assessors?
Yes, the process to log in is the same for clients and assessors. Each will use their existing credentials to log into BREEAM Projects. The tool will then identify the user and display the relevant pages.
  1. How do I access BREEAM Projects?
You can access BREEAM In-Use using this BREEAM Projects link: https://tools.breeam.com/projects/login.jsp
  1. How do I log in from the USA or China?
Our Clients and Assessors in the USA or Chinese markets will be able to log in using the same login credentials that they currently use on the BIU Platform. They will also be provided with an option to switch the language within the tool.
  1. Will I have the ability to work in local currencies?
No additional currency support has been added to the platform as part of this migration.
  1. Will the terms of use change when we move to the Projects Platform?
All users, when accessing BREEAM Projects for the first time, will be required to agree to our ‘Terms of Use’ for the system. These Terms will not be too different from the existing ‘Terms of Use’ within BREEAM Projects and BREEAM In-Use platform. Whenever updated ‘Terms of Use’ are issued, users will be prompted to read and accept these before accessing the system.
  1. How do I contact BREEAM for support?
Assessors are encouraged to submit all enquiries using the webform, which can be found via the Assessor Support tab in BREEAM Projects. This provides drop-down menus to select the Department/Area and to choose further options, to ensure that your enquiry goes to the correct team. Note: To help us provide an efficient service, Assessors are required to submit all technical queries using this webform. Clients and other interested parties may continue to contact us by emailing the dedicated BREEAM In-Use email address: [email protected]

19. How do I upload evidence on BREEAM Projects?

 Please follow this link to view guidance: Updated Process for Uploading Evidence
28 July 2023 FAQ 19 added

BREEAM Projects – basic asset details – asset constructed over different years - KBCN1626

Where different parts of the asset have been constructed over different years, in Basic Asset Details enter the year representing the largest proportion of floor area. For example, if 60% of the asset area was constructed in 2008, and 40% in 1993, use '2008' as the year of construction.

Compliance: Applicability of criteria to scheme’s previous versions - KBCN0430

Criteria set for a scheme version are not applicable retrospectively to previous versions.

Compliance: Conflicts of interest for the BREEAM assessor - KBCN0107

The assessor can be someone within the design team or work for the same company as the design team member(s) but the assessor must identify and manage any potential conflicts of interest. The assessor should also make BRE Global aware of the situation so that, should it prove appropriate, the certification report can be escalated to a more detailed level of quality assurance checking. If the assessor is a member of the company who are producing evidence to demonstrate compliance, there must be clear separation of the roles and the BREEAM/HQM assessor must not be personally responsible for producing such evidence. BREEAM/HQM is a 3rd party certification scheme. Therefore, it is important to avoid any conflicts of interest between those producing evidence and those awarding credits to ensure the robustness of the certification process. 

Evidence – Photographs not permitted for security reasons - KBCN0389

Where photographs are not permitted during a site visit for security reasons, in addition to any alternative evidence requirements listed in the Schedule of Evidence for each issue, the assessor will also need to provide a detailed site inspection report and/or as-built drawings (where permitted by the client). If following this approach, full justification and documentary evidence from the client will be required for QA purposes.

Occupancy calculation – Buildings with shift patterns - KBCN0431

In buildings with shift patterns, as shifts may overlap, the building users calculation should be based on the maximum occupancy of the building at any given time.

Process Notes - KBCN0611

Process notes can be accessed by licensed assessors here. When a new process note has been released, you may be required to tick the box to confirm you have read the note to be able to access other documents in BREEAM Projects. To do this scroll to the bottom of the Process Note index page and tick the box and click next.  

Process: Registration date and applicable scheme manual issue - KBCN0708

Typically the scheme technical manual issue which is current when a project is registered should be used for the assessment. For example, if a BREEAM UK New Construction 2014 development was registered on 01/07/2016, the current issue of the scheme technical manual at that point would be issue 4.1, which was published on 11/03/2016 (the next issue 5.0 of the technical manual was published on 05/09/2016). However, it is permissible for the assessor to decide to use a later issue of the technical manual. The scheme technical manual version and issue used for the assessment should be clearly referenced within the assessment report. Note that in any case, the same technical manual version and issue should be used for the entire assessment. It is not acceptable to assess different credits based on different issues of the technical manual and it is not acceptable to change issues between submissions of the assessment.
26 09 17 Clarification added that the 'Issue' of the technical manual may not be changed between assessment submissions

Purchasing BREEAM In-Use credits - KBCN1461

Online Payment – Credit/Debit card
The quickest route to obtaining BREEAM In-Use International credits for Measurement, Certification, Renewal and Mid-cycle certification, is to purchase these online and paying by credit/debit card. On successful completion of payment, the credits will be automatically allocated to the account who is logged in. BREEAM Projects To purchase a measurement credit, you will need to be logged in to the Client organisation account that will be making the registration. To purchase any certification credits, you will need to be logged in to the individual Assessor account who will be completing the assessment and submitting for QA and Certification. (Please remember that Assessor logins should never be shared with other individuals within the same company or externally KBCN0742) An email receipt of the payment is issued following the purchase online.
Cost Proposal and Invoice
If you are unable to purchase credits online using the card payment option, these can be processed via a cost proposal and invoice. You can select invoice on the 'Purchase credits' page within BREEAM Projects and complete the online request form. The request should be completed via the account who will be signing the cost proposal and receiving and paying the invoice. Further instructions and conditions are detailed within the request forms. Please be aware that the cost proposal and invoicing route is much slower than purchasing with a credit/debit card. The timescale for creating a cost proposal is 3-5 working days from the date the request form is submitted. The cost proposal is then sent to the contact on the cost proposal request and acceptance of the proposal and signature is required. The signed cost proposal is then returned to [email protected] and an invoice will be processed and issued to the customer. The timescale for processing a signed cost proposal is 3-5 working days before the invoice is issued. Once payment of the invoice is received and cleared within our accounts, the credits will be added to the accounts detailed in the original request. Credits will only be added following payment of the invoice. Assessors who will be signing the cost proposal and paying the invoice can submit the request form within their Assessor login. If you require the credits to be added urgently then the online payment route should be followed.

Technical: Location of scheme technical documents - KBCN00022

All scheme technical manuals are available to view and download on the BREEAM website http://www.breeam.com/technical-standards. Always refer to the BREEAM website to make sure that you have access to the most up-to-date version of the relevant scheme technical manual.

Volume Approach – Site visit requirements - KBCN1644

This guidance applies only to assessments for clients who have entered into a formal agreement with BRE to enter the Volume Approach. The aim of the Volume Approach is to assist clients with large numbers of assets, and their assessors, to conduct assessments in a robust manner, whilst also taking a practical view. From the clients’ assets that have entered the process, BRE will identify which assets may undertake a virtual site visit. The assets and their assessments cannot be new to the BREEAM In-Use process and must be identified and communicated to BRE prior to undertaking the site visits. The requirements of the virtual site visits are as follows: Gathering evidence for site assessments: In cases where BRE has identified an asset can undergo a virtual site visit, the assessor is not required to personally visit or gain access to the site, they can use the following methods:
  1. Appoint a suitable individual, for example a main contractor or asset manager, to undertake a formal site assessment on their behalf. The appointed individual would be expected to provide a robust account to the assessor of evidence in place of their own site assessment report. We would expect the report to contain photographs and/or virtual tour stills from the building and be signed off by both the appointed individual and assessor.
  2. For assessment issues relating to external spaces beyond the site, we will accept stills/images from Google Street View (or equivalent), provided it is demonstrated that such evidence is current.
  3. Desk-based evidence will be accepted where evidence demonstrates that the criteria are being met as far as possible without a site assessment.
It is important to note that where one of the above 3 options has been selected, the assessor is responsible for assessing the evidence and for the awarding of any credits. Timing of workshops, testing and other subsidiary evidence submissions: Given the widespread availability of remote communication technologies, it is generally possible to undertake the majority of activities relating to our assessment criteria without the need for face-to-face contact or site assessments. With respect to workshops, the key consideration is that they take place at a time when they have a meaningful impact and achieve the aim of the criteria. With respect to subsidiary, third party assessments such as ecological site inspections or audits, desktop surveys based on available information (e.g. planning surveys, agent’s reports, photographs, Google Earth), can be used as an alternative provided there is enough material for a confident recommendation and/or outcome to be achieved.    
Information correct as of 22ndJune 2024. Please see kb.breeam.com for the latest compliance information.