It stands to reason that quality high performance buildings that have been carefully planned & executed will require more man-hours from specialised designers, consultants & builders. One would expect that there is a cost associated with this. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t bring your Passive House in on budget. Let me explain.
Along with labour, additional Passive House building costs are attributed to specialised membranes that create the airtight envelope, the cost of the Mechanical Heat Recovery Ventilation (MHRV) unit & costs associated with testing the performance of the building at the different stages throughout the project. Testing such as thermal modelling during the design phase & the blower door tests which check the air exchanges within the building, during construction & before handover.
These costs are upfront costs & will be recouped in the following ways:
- dramatically reduced energy bills for the life of the building
- good health- due to high air quality, soundproofing from external noise & comfortable temperature regardless of the outdoor temperature
- a more valuable asset at time of sale due to its high energy performance & building longevity
How to bring your Passive House in on budget
- Reduce the size of the project rather than reducing the quality. You can add size later if required but can’t add the energy performance as efficiently.
- Work with a certified or experienced Passive House builder who won’t be adding a ‘risk premium’ for unknowns because they are already familiar with the performance standard
- Contracting a builder at design concept stage so that they can work with the designer to advise on ways to make the build more cost efficient.