Cost Data

We have compiled a collection of data from various organizations showing how much Phius projects really cost to build.

Passive House Premium?

Conventional wisdom says that the efficiency, comfort, resilience, and quality of Phius buildings come at a stiff premium. But as more and more performance data rolls in, we're learning otherwise. Phius certified buildings are coming in at or near cost levels of conventional equivalent buildings. Below you will find some of that data -- check back, there's more coming.

The taller the building, the lower the cost

Multifamily Phius projects have proven to be the most cost effective type of building. This is because 1) the surface area to volume ratio of multifamily projects is such that less insulation is required, and 2) it is easier to meet the air sealing requirements. Less insulation + time spent on air sealing = savings.

Practice Makes Cost Effective

It has been empirically proven that the more experienced a project team/contractor is on a Phius project, the more money they will save. Teams that are familiar with the processes, principles, materials etc. associated with passive building save money by working more efficiently and making sound decisions when it comes to materials and systems.

This trend is revealed in states with strong policies incentivizing passive building, such as Pennsylvania, which includes passive in its qualified allocation plan as part of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit. The accompanying graph compares the average costs of passive house vs. non-passive house projects in Pennsylvania across three years. In just that short amount of time, the average passive project became cheaper to construct than its code-built counterpart.

Policy --> Construction --> Expertise --> Lower Costs

Get More Passive Cost Details

Check out our in-depth cost memo for more details about the cost effectiveness of Phius projects.

How Much Does a Phius Building Cost?

We have compiled some of the cost data related to passive building projects to help answer this important question.

Passive vs. Average Comparison

Below is cost data compiled from the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Authority for Phius projects that received funding from the Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program. 

Average Cost/sq. Ft of the Non-Passive House Projects ($176 (+/-$36)

Average Cost/sq. Ft of the Passive House Projects ($168 (+/-$45)

Non-Passive House Projects

Passive House Projects

Number of Units

Building Area

(Sq. ft)

Cost/sq. ft

Number of Units

Building Area

(Sq. ft)

Cost/sq. ft

45

53,021

$128

54

70,128

$111

53

82,070

$129

34

39,447

$145

40

53,52

$144

49

54,287

$151

35

61,504

$149

66

70,689

$155

45

63,458

$154

61

63,949

$157

40

40,959

$157

50

55,099

$226

24

36,064

$160

52

50,275

$233

31

43,868

$162

 

 

 

53

51,690

$163

 

 

 

44

49,406

$169

 

 

 

56

56,250

$176

 

 

 

28

45,434

$178

 

 

 

12

16,796

$181

 

 

 

43

55,832

$185

 

 

 

51

62,509

$189

 

 

 

23

28,205

$193

 

 

 

37

48,767

$199

 

 

 

88

79,560

$228

 

 

 

52

43,868

$287