Planned amendment of the Viennese Building Code

Obligation to install Solar Systems on Residential buildings

The planned amendment of the Viennese Building Code (under assessment since April 27th 2020), sets forth that in case of the construction of new residential buildings, solar energy sources are mandatory. In case of newly constructed commercial buildings this obligation already exists since 2014.

Residential buildings must be constructed with a minimum capacity of solar energy, specifically a minimum of 1 kWp (Kilowatt Peak) per characteristic length of the building and per conditioned gross capacity of 300 sqm. It is envisaged that the energy produced may be consumed for the general parts of the building. However, such an obligation does not exist, if for the supply of heating other alternative highly energetic systems are available, such as tele-heating (Fernwärme).

The legislator expects construction costs for such investments of approximately EUR 1,200.00 per kilowatt peak and therefore assumes a cost parity between investment costs and energy savings after 2 to 5 years.

Single- and two-family houses are not subject to the current amendment. In addition, an exception from the obligation may be possible on request in individual cases, if the obligation is not practicable for technical or economic reasons. However, a corresponding obligation to set up solar systems on replacement areas, as it already exists for commercial buildings, is not required for residential buildings.

It is yet unclear when these planned amendments regarding solar systems for residential buildings, will enter into force. However, for proceedings which are already pending, or proceedings which had been pending up at the date of entry into force of the amendments, the previous legal situation will still be applicable.

In addition, the administrative procedure should be able to be carried out electronically more and more. For instance the process of filing of the building announcement, the application for building permit, the announcement of the start of construction or the notification of completion shall be possible to be performed electronically.

The Real Estate Experts of CERHA HEMPEL are happy to assist you and to advice with respect to your construction and real estate projects.

Authores: Mag. Mark Krenn, Dr. Angelika Schüßler-Datler, LL.M.