The Passive House Standard is the world's most rigorous certification standard for energy efficient, comfortable, healthy buildings.
Designing to meet the Passive House Standard is more than implementing passive design strategies. It is a comprehensive and rigorous design and construction partnership, that offers region-specific solutions, design flexibility, and meaningful environmental choices, all at an affordable price tag.
The Passive House Standard was developed in Germany over 30 years ago. Although there have been many improvements to the standard since then, original prototypes have stood the test of time, and are still performing near to their original energy levels.
The standard is driven by a simple set of design criteria, fine-tuned to ensure energy balance. It can be applied to any building type, in any climate, and is a proven way to reduce operational carbon emissions- Passive House Certified buildings use only 10-15% of the energy used in conventional construction.
Our top 5 reasons why Passive House is an excellent alternative to conventional design:
A Passive House is a healthy house.
Passive House design principles take a holistic approach to energy balance within the envelope of the building.
This provides occupants with a consistent and comfortable temperature inside the space year round, it eliminates cold spots and mold growth, and provides continuous fresh air supply to every area of the building.
A Passive House is incredibly energy efficient.
Passive Houses need very little energy to operate; only about 10-15% of the energy required to heat and cool a conventional building... about the same amount of energy it takes to operate a hair dryer!
This contributes to low maintenance requirements and exponential energy savings, regardless of the building size or type.
Passive House design is performance based.
The Passive House Building Standard is established by meeting an energy performance target.
Unlike other standards, this standard allows for a non-prescriptive design process—there are no check-boxes or material requirements that must be followed. This allows for each project to be tailored specifically to their site, climate and the needs and values of the client.
A Passive House is affordable.
Passive House buildings don't rely on complicated technology and expensive capital investments. They use smart design principles, intelligent siting, careful massing, heat recovery, controlled air handling, and a thick envelope to balance energy flow.
On average, Certified Passive Houses typically cost between 4-9% more than a conventional building. Careful planning and integrated construction management can make this number even smaller. This capital investment is recovered through reduced operational costs and longer lifespan products.
Passive House plays well with other standards.
Is energy efficiency not enough for your project? The Passive House Standard can be paired with other strategies of environmental stewardship to obtain even more aggressive levels of sustainability.
Take your Passive House off grid, manage its waste-water onsite, use low embodied carbon materials, or join forces with other standards such as LEED or Living Building Challenge to take your building to the next level.