BEIS Whole House Retrofit (WHR) competition

The Whole House Retrofit (WHR) cost reduction trajectory competition is a key early step in accelerating a reduction in domestic retrofit costs.

It supports the government’s:

  • Ambition to halve the cost of retrofitting existing buildings to the same standard as new builds by 2030
  • Fuel Poverty target to bring as many fuel poor homes as reasonably practicable to EPC band C by 2030
  • Aspiration for as many homes as cost effective, practical and affordable to reach the same standard by 2035

The competition

The WHR competition will make available approximately £9.4 million for a limited number of projects which demonstrate a cost reduction trajectory for whole house retrofit.

Projects must consider both process related innovations and material aspects of retrofit, focusing on mass production and large-scale delivery.

It is anticipated that successful projects will focus on upgrading social housing properties, given the comparative uniformity of the dwellings, and the ability to procure at scale. However, credible alternative proposals will be considered.

Key outputs:

  • Demonstration of cost reduction through process innovation
  • Evidence of sources of cost reduction
  • A minimum of 200 homes overall improved by at least 25 SAP points reaching at least Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) band B, and with minimum fabric efficiency levels
  • Development of retrofit plans, installation of whole house retrofits, commissioning with residents, and post installation monitoring.

Competition timescales and eligibility

  • The WHR competition should open week beginning 10 June 2019.
  • Bids should be submitted within 6 weeks after it opens
  • Projects must complete by March 2021

Bids are welcome from any organisation, or consortium, which can meet the expected outputs, including SMEs, large enterprises, academic, financial, research, public and third sector organisations.

The competition is UK wide. Projects will need to demonstrate leverage of third-party funding.

Successful bidders will need to have access to a large number of similar properties in which whole house retrofit is possible within the project timeframe. In practice, this is likely to generate bids from consortia of retrofit industry players and social housing providers. BEIS will have a direct relationship only with one party in a consortium who will be responsible for project delivery.