New report presents concepts to nudge homeowners toward climate-friendly choices

State of Green
By State of Green, June 04, 2020

New nudging concepts from the Danish Energy Agency will get more Danes to invest in energy renovations of their homes. The effort is targeted at promoting the economic as well as the climate advantages.

Energy renovations of privately owned homes is one of the biggest challenges in the transition toward a greener future. In Denmark, single-family homes account for 75 per cent of the energy consumption in buildings, according to the Danish Energy Agency. Therefore, it is necessary to increase energy efficiency of Danish households.

“There is great potential for energy savings in Danish homes, and we must exploit this. My goal is that more homeowners will reduce their energy consumption while saving money on heating bills. At the same time, several energy renovations will boost employment throughout the country. And we need that right now,” said Minister of Climate, Energy and Utilities, Dan Jørgensen in a press release.

To this end, the Danish Energy Agency has collaborated with the Danish research company INudgeYou. They have created a range of concepts, using behavioural science approaches, to get more homeowners to go from simply considering energy renovations to actually implementing them.

-Related solution: Energy efficient renovation of facades improves learning of children

Five concepts to reduce CO2

A report containing the energy renovation concepts presents five concepts based on field and laboratory experiments as well as collaborations with real estate agents and banks.

  • Concept 1: New, behaviour-optimised energy labelling report with step-by-step guides to energy optimisations and highlighting of economically viable actions
  • Concept 2: Interactive energy label on digital home ads
  • Concept 3: A new digital platform (further development of the existing website
  • Concept 4: Customised one-pager for homeowners’ meeting with the bank
  • Concept 5: Customised e-mail letters for citizens

The Danish Energy Agency will incorporate the concepts into the further work on the initiative for a more robust energy labelling scheme, which is expected to be implemented within a couple of years.

-Related solution: Energy Efficiency in New Buildings Toolkit

Collaboration with banks is vital to get homeowners to consider renovation

The concepts are followed up by a campaign targeting the dialogue between homeowners and their banks. Far too few Danish homeowners are discussing the possibility of investing in energy renovations with their bank. To get the dialogue on energy renovations going, the Ministry of Climate, Energy and Utilities and Finance Denmark, the leading industry organisation for the Danish financial sector, have established a partnership.

“As an important part of society, the financial sector has a shared responsibility for ensuring that we jointly ensure a better climate and environment. Every day, customer advisers meet with homeowners about the future and the dreams they have about improving their home. The new tools and guidelines from the Danish Energy Agency make a toolbox available to the banks, which they can use voluntarily,” said Ulrik Nødgaard, CEO, Finance Denmark in a press release.

As it is today in Denmark, all houses must be energy-labelled before being put up for sale. Therefore, there is a lot of knowledge about what energy renovations are advisable to make. With the new collaboration, the bank’s customer advisors will play a key role in translating this knowledge into concrete energy savings by using the energy label reports in their conversations with the customers.


Read the report from the Danish Energy Agency and INudgeYou here (in Danish).


Photo: Nick Karvounis

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