Certified Passive House Designer/Consultant Course (PHDC)

Certified Passive House Designer/Consultant Course (PHDC)


Do you want to design energy-efficient & cost-optimal buildings worldwide?

Then the Passive House standard is what you are looking for, and this course shouldn’t be missed! You will learn everything first-hand from how to define the thermal envelope to overcoming frequent planning and construction challenges. This course is aimed at all building professionals, including architects, engineers, policy makers, contractors and builders. However, we often see owner-builders and non-building professionals doing the course too. It consists of 9 days of in-class training.

Besides lectures and discussions, you will deepen your knowledge with workshops, as well as calculation and design exercises. In addition, you will have a closer look at the Passive House component and materials collection!

The course:

Smart Plus Homes’s Certified Passive House Designer/Consultant course is the premier training program for becoming a Passive House building professional. This course is specifically designed to teach the international Standard to Australian professionals and preparing you for the Passive House international examination. This course will provide you with the fundamentals of designing high-performance buildings and nearly zero energy buildings. In addition, it will introduce a possible sustainable solution for production and the energy distribution network.

The course content is supported by nearly 30 years of global leadership from the Passive House Institute, and the successful implementation of the Passive House standard to the Australian building industry over 6 years ago, by the Australian Passive House Association (APHA).

With 9 days of in-class training and teaching, students will get a thorough understanding of the critical aspects of Passive House design and construction. Participants will be able to apply the lessons learned directly to their real-world work experience.

On successfully passing the exam, participants will receive a five-year registration as an internationally accredited Certified Passive House Designer or Consultant.

In-class schedule (times and units may change):

  • Day 1: Introduction to the Passive House principles, basics and history.
  • Day 2: The building enclosure, airtightness, thermal bridging, thermal imaging and airtightness testing.
  • Day 3: All about windows: principles, calculations, details, systems and components.
  • Day 4: Ventilation and health: heating, cooling, dehumidification, heat recovery and ventilation system design. Overview of domestic hot water: principles, calculations, details, systems and components.
  • Day 5: All about heating and cooling: principles, calculations, details, systems and components.
  • Day 6: Retrofits, certifications, quality assurance and exam preparation.
  • Day 7: Economics: principles, calculations and exam preparation.
  • Day 8: designPH and PHPP basics.
  • Day 9: exam preparation and site visit


The course above will prepare you to pass the Certified Passive House Designer/Consultant exam. The exam itself is not included in the course. The test can be taken 4 times a year at any examination centre worldwide. When taking the exam with Smart Plus Homes, you will get one day of preparation the day before the exam. On successfully passing the exam you will receive an internationally accredited Certified Passive House Designer or Consultant certificate and be listed on the Passive House Institutes worldwide database for 5 years. Please be aware that the exam needs to be booked separately.


The original Passive House Institute presentation slides, and notes will be provided in 5 coloured workbooks with over 1700 A4 Pages. This workbook will be covered in class and will allow further studies after the course.

Passive House Planning Package (PHPP):

The current version of the PHPP energy modelling software will be provided with the registration for the course and will be registered to the attending participant. The PHPP is a necessity for designing Passive Houses.


The designation “Designer” is reserved for architects, engineers and similarly specialised building professionals. The “Consultants” designation is for non-specialised professionals and others. A more detailed guideline can be found here.

Required material:

Students need to bring writing materials and a calculator. Coloured pens are recommended. A laptop with Microsoft Excel installed is needed to work with the PHPP software.

Note: Your final answers (including drawings) of the exam must be in ink, not pencil.The exam is open book.  No electronic devices connected to the internet are permitted.


Daniel Kress

Daniel started his career as a carpenter in Germany and then worked in Ireland on the biggest residential modular project in the world at that time. After 10 years in the building game, he started his studies in civil engineering and worked as a researcher for the European Union in sustainable building.

Since 2015 Daniel has been working in the Australian building industry with the bold aim of creating healthier and more sustainable buildings. He started the business Smart Plus Homes 2017 following his mission of implementing the Passive House Principles into the National Construction Code by 2030. His primary focus is to educate and consult the building industry regarding health and sustainable construction. Smart Plus Homes additionally provides Passive House Designs and product solutions for the building industry.

Daniel is also a representative of the Australian Passive House Association.  The Australian Passive House Association is an independent, not-for-profit organisation which aims to promote Passive House principles as a way of providing superior indoor comfort and air quality while reducing energy use and carbon emissions from Australia’s buildings.

Registration/Ticket Options: *All prices excluding GST

□ Full Course and Exam Package (Course, PHPP, preparation day and exam)                                                                                    $ 4,542.73

□ Full Course                                                                                                                                                                                                    $ 3,200.00


Cost and Package Breakdown:

Passive House Designer Course                                                                                                                                                                   $ 3200.00

    9 full days of learning about Passive House and how to design a Passive House.

    Included in this price is:

  • The Passive House Designer workbooks with about 1800 pages
  • Additional course material like the “cheat sheet” and exam-like questions

Passive House Planning Package                                                                                                                                                                  $ 300.00

    The PHPP software and Handbook

    (Highly recommended for the course and a requirement for the exam)

One-Day Passive House Designer Exam preparation                                                                                                                                  $ 274.73

    The day before the exam specific preparation with exam-like questions and exercises.

Passive House Designer Exam                                                                                                                                                                         $ 750.00

    The exam will be 3-hours. 

     On successfully passing the exam, you will receive an internationally recognised certificate and

     be listed on the Passive House Institutes worldwide database for 5 years.


Contact Smart Plus Homes by email: info@smartplushomes.com.au or by phone: 0451146007.

Disclaimer: By schedule and financial necessity, this course is not meant to produce fully formed Passive House professionals, but rather form a foundation of knowledge that the professional can then take and build on with a lifetime of learning. This is a nine-day intensive course, in the basic building science and learning objectives which provides specific knowledge to prepare for the Certified Passive House Designer or Consultant examination and working as a Passive House Designer or Consultant.

By enrolling in this Course at Smart Plus Homes, you are agreeing to abide by the policies, procedures and regulations of the class location. This includes an agreement with the refund policy stated below, and agreement to your personal information being disclosed in accordance with Smart Plus Homes’s Privacy Collection Statement, viewable at https://smartplushomes.com.au/disclaimer/privacy-statement-collection-notice/.

You are also providing confirmation that the information you have provided to enrol, is complete and correct. Fee refunds will only be issued if a course withdrawal request is received at least thirty (30) days prior to the date of course commencement. A $50 administration fee will be charged. No refunds will be issued for withdrawal requests received after this time. Course Transfers: Students wishing to transfer to a future start date of the same course will be accepted if a request is received at least thirty (30) days prior to the date of course commencement and providing a suitable future course offering is available. Course Cancellation by Smart Plus Homes reserves the right to cancel a scheduled course. In the event of a cancellation, students will be notified two days before the scheduled start date. Classes are subject to sufficient enrolment numbers. Smart Plus Homes makes every effort to ensure that information is correct at the time of publication, but reserves the right to change or postpone courses, and to alter schedules, locations, fees and teachers due to unforeseen circumstances. Where a course is cancelled by Smart Plus Homes, a full refund will be issued. Processing of all withdrawal and course cancellation refunds takes a minimum of fifteen (15) working days. Refunds will be made directly to the payee and will be mailed to the payee’s address as shown on the application form

Please be aware that a photographer and filming team from or commissioned by Smart Plus Homes will be taking photographs and filming the event. The photographs and films may be published, transmitted or broadcast and may be circulated to the press and other broadcast media and Internet websites for publication, transmission or broadcast.

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