German Pilot Project

Testing the REQUEST quality framework in 30 low carbon housing renovation projects in the Münster and Leipzig region, Germany

The German energy agency dena, leading the work package "Development of a Quality Framework", is responsible within REQUEST for developing standards and instruments for quality assured renovation processes. The quality framework takes the form of renovation quality checklists, which were tested in the German pilot project by tradesmen, energy experts and engineers in about 30 low carbon housing renovation projects. The renovated buildings included single-family homes, apartment buildings and two buildings of mixed residential and commercial use. Some of the more challenging renovation projects were the renovation of an old multifamily building to the passive house standard and the renovation of two buildings in Leipzig to low energy standards.

The market actors involved in the pilot project were assisted by dena’s regional partners, namely the Chambers of Crafts from the Münster and Leipzig region. During the entire renovation process the regional partners have being in contact with the tradesmen in order to monitor and evaluate the use of the guidelines and checklists.

 Key lessons learnt:

  • Challenges for complete renovation of houses (thermal improvement of the building envelope, replacement of building services, etc.) are very different from stand alone renovation actions (e.g. stand-alone installation of PV). The challenge becomes even tougher when undertaking the complete renovation of an entire apartment block.
  • The REQUEST quality checklists as instrument for quality assurance throughout renovation processes are approved. However, trades people involved in the pilot indicate that some improvements in terms of user-friendliness are required.
  • Co-operation with existing promotional programs should be set  up in order to raise awareness with builders and craftsmen on the quality assurance instruments developed.

The 30 low carbon housing renovations led to a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of about 34.000 t CO2/year and up to 168.000 MWh of primary energy savings until the year 2020.