In conjunction with ComRes, a WSP report unveils a growing overheating trend in London’s property market and recommends that new measures be adopted. The report, titled Overheating in homes, reveals that four out five Londoners claim to suffer from unbearably hot homes in the summer, with more than half of those affected also complaining of a related lack of sleep. Furthermore, researchers found that close to one third of those suffering overheating at night felt tired or unwell the next day.

One phenomenon addressed in the report is Urban Heat Island (UHI), an effect that causes urban areas to experience warmer temperatures than surrounding rural areas. Harder and darker surfaces in cities lead to greater absorption of heat, with less evapotranspiration, where heat energy is used to evaporate water from the surfaces of leaves or soil. City surfaces generate 15% in reflected energy, while heat from vehicles, and even cooling systems, contributes to higher temperatures in urban areas.

“Overheating needs direct action, and a robust, industry-wide accepted way of analyzing its effects needs to be applied to all new homes and the environments where they are built,” says Barny Evans, an associate at WSP and the report’s author. “This presents an opportunity to build better, more sustainable and ultimately more desirable homes that will be comfortable for residents now and in the future.”