It is internationally accepted that the human race is affecting climate change due to its carbon intensive infrastructure and institutions. In many developed nations one third of carbon emissions are created by domestic energy. In response, many building assessment tools have been developed to reduce carbon emissions in construction and use. The UK aims to reduce carbon emissions by 80% by 2050 relative to a 1990 baseline. With this aim, the UK has implemented the Code for Sustainable Homes (CSH) as a national standard, mandatory for all new social housing. CSH assess the sustainability of a home across nine categories: water, energy, minerals, surface run-off, waste, pollution, health and well-being and, management and ecology. There are six levels of achievement. Code 3 requires 10% reduction in carbon emissions compared to 2006 building regulations and code 6 aims to achieve zero carbon in-use.This paper discusses the role of new housing in reducing carbon emissions. Studies outline that even if occupants live in identical homes, some households use up-to-three times as much energy as their neighbours. Inhabitant perceptions and behaviours will therefore largely determine the energy efficiency of a home. This study investigates how domestic energy consumption is related to inhabitant perceptions and consumption behaviours, focusing on heating and ventilation by investigating inhabitants’: perceptions of climate change; perceptions of their consumption behaviours; actual consumption behaviours; and, perceived comfort related to actual temperature and humidity. Where relevant, the impact of fuel poverty will be considered.Two social housing schemes (accessed through Oaklee Housing Association) were selected to offer insight into differing approaches to achieving Code 4 of CSH: natural materials and timber frame construction (6 homes); and, masonry construction (12 homes). Oil/gas and electricity monthly meter readings will be taken during the winter period from August 2011 to March 2012 (18 homes). In-depth data collection will consist of the following (10 homes): household qualitative interviews, including inhabitant perceptions; temperature and humidity in each room during one week (January to March 2012) alongside a household diary of perceived comfort and use of heating and ventilation systems.Results will be outlined and are expected to identify: variation in energy consumption; drivers and barriers to reducing household energy consumption; impact of household perceptions on consumption behaviours; and, variation in temperature and humidity required for comfort. This methodology will be repeated in summer (April to August 2012). Conclusions will consider if such dwellings both reduce domestic energy consumption and meet comfort and economic need. Findings will be disseminated to policy makers and designers to advise a way forward to reducing domestic carbon emissions grounded in the perceptions and behaviours of the inhabitant.