Transparent energy use

If a real estate advertisement sounds interesting, potential buyers will quickly want to know more about its energy efficiency standard and therefore the future costs for heating and hot water.

The energy performance certificate provides information on the energy efficiency of each building. A distinction is made between a consumption certificate and a requirements certificate. Find out more here.

Information in the energy performance certificate

Demand and consumption

The amount of energy consumed in a building depends on its energy efficiency. The energy performance certificate provides relevant information in this respect.

The energy performance certificate is a convenient way for tenants, leaseholders and buyers to compare the energy requirements and consumption of buildings in Germany. It helps to estimate the potential costs for heating and hot water. The energy performance certificate, pursuant to the German Buildings Energy Act (Gebäudeenergiegesetz, GEG), contains information on the building and its heating, as well as on the property’s energy performance indicators. In a nutshell: it rates the building’s energy efficiency status.

The document or a copy must be submitted to interested persons no later than when they inspect a property; it must be handed over after completion of the purchase, lease or rent contract. In contrast, the energy performance certificate provides homeowners with points of reference for the energy-efficient refurbishment of their building: it systematically discloses a building’s energy deficiencies and simultaneously shows which measures can be implemented in order to improve the energy balance.

The energy performance certificate provides orientation

Like the energy efficiency label for electrical devices, the energy efficiency of buildings is classified on a sliding bar label with a colour scale from green to red to indicate their energy requirements or consumption. This enables costs for heating and hot water to be estimated. Moreover, the efficiency classes provide pointers for the building’s energy efficiency status. Therefore, the introduction of these classes should be welcomed in principle.  But there are risks associated with the current assignment to classes based on energy requirements: it can produce misleading interpretations, as the difference in costs for energy sources and other facts may not be considered.

Issuers of energy performance certificates

Energy performance certificates are issued by experts who are qualified according to Section 88 of the German Buildings Energy Act (Gebäudeenergiegesetz, GEG).

Homeowners and investors will find issuers of energy performance certificates in dena’s Database of Efficient House Experts. Various experts listed in the Database of Energy Efficiency Experts for Government Funding Programmes are also entitled to issue certificates.

Additional information on the energy performance certificate can be found at

You can access further information on the energy performance certificate in the Climate-neutral Building Forum.

Projects on the topic

Campaign “zukunft haus” (“future house”).

What was originally conceived of as a portal for informing and motivating owners in 2003 has now developed into an extensive campaign and a mainstay for stakeholders from the industry and politicians, as well as for the press.


  • Project start: 2003
  • Over 9,000 newsletter subscribers
  • Approx. 30,000 press reports with a total reach (circulation) of 1.2 billion
  • Turnover of more than 6.3 million information brochures
  • Free hotline: over 100,000 questions on energy efficiency in buildings
  • Website: (consumer) information tailored specifically for a particular target group; over 8 million visitors on central internet platform