Heating costs in older, unrefurbished buildings often eat into the budget. Energy refurbishment measures can help reduce this expenditure. “To save money in the long term, you have to make the necessary investment in the short term. However, there are a range of state funding options, both for individual energy refurbishment measures and full refurbishment projects,” emphasises Christian Stolte, energy-efficient buildings expert at the Deutsche Energie-Agentur (dena) – the German Energy Agency.
KfW and BAFA: Funding for energy refurbishment
Anyone who wants to install energy-saving heating technology, use renewable energy sources, upgrade their windows or insulate the roof, the facade or the cellar ceiling can find suitable sources of funding by entering their postal code on www.die-hauswende.de. The site offers information on nationwide and regional programmes. The state development bank KfW provides low-interest loans (in some cases with repayment subsidies) or investment subsidies through its “Energy-Efficient Refurbishment” programme. The Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (BAFA) also subsidises the use of renewable energy sources for water and building heating.
Energy consultation as a guide
“For house owners, it can make sense to gain an initial overview of recommended energy refurbishment measures on their building. A visit from a qualified energy consultant is a good first step,” advises Stolte. The Internet portal www.die-hauswende.de offers contact addresses for qualified experts in all regions of Germany. The energy consultant checks the state of the building substance and heating, compiles useful suggestions for improvement and can provide initial tips on potential financing options. Another advantage: On-site energy consultation for single- and double-family houses is subsidised with up to € 800. The consultants themselves apply for the subsidies from BAFA.
You can also discuss other financing matters with the energy consultant. For example, how to use the existing budget as effectively as possible. “Energy refurbishment does not have to be done at once, it can be implemented gradually over an extended period. That reduces the financial strain,” adds Stolte: “The energy consultant then produces a detailed schedule of measures for gradual refurbishment.”
The campaign “The Building Transition”
The information campaign “The Building Transition” was initiated by the “Allianz für Gebäude-Energie-Effizienz” (geea) – “Alliance for Building Energy Efficiency”. Also involved in addition to dena are the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, the Federal Construction Ministry as well as companies and associations from the relevant branches of the economy.
Further information is available at www.die-hauswende.de.