Passive House certification criteria


Passive House is the world‘s leading standard in energy efficient construction.

The Passive House Standard stands for quality, comfort and energy efficiency. Passive Houses require very little energy to achieve a comfortable temperature year round, making conventional heating and air conditioning systems obsolete. While delivering superior levels of comfort, the Passive House Standard also protects the building structure.


For a building to be considered a Passive House, it must meet the following criteria (for detailed criteria, please see



Space Heating Demand      

not to exceed 15kWh annually OR 10W (peak demand) per square metre of usable living space

Space Cooling Demand

roughly matches the heat demand with an additional, climate-dependent allowance for dehumidification

Primary Energy Demand

not to exceed 120kWh annually for all domestic applications (heating, cooling, hot water and domestic electricity) per square meter of usable living space


maximum of 0.6 air changes per hour at 50 Pascals pressure (as verified with an onsite pressure test in both pressurised and depressurised states)

Thermal Comfort

Thermal comfort must be met for all living areas year-round with not more than 10% of the hours in any given year over 25°C* 

*For a complete overview of general quality requirements (soft criteria) see Passipedia.


The definitive criteria for the certification of Passive House components and Passive Houses are set by the Passive House Institute under the direction of Dr. Wolfgang Feist.


Passive House buildings are planned, optimised and verified with the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP).  Learn more



This checklist may make it easier for your building to achieve the Passive House Standard by outlining the most important steps in the process. View the checklist on Passipedia


Advantages of certification

While a Passive House building does not need to be certified to be considered a Passive House, certification provides an important and visible form of quality assurance.

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The international network for Passive House knowledge
Promoting the Passive House Standard worldwide

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