Retrofit Australia

Retrofitting one million+ Australian homes over five years


Creating future-ready homes

with improved thermal comfort, energy efficiency, and a path to electrification


Increasing occupant comfort & health

and decreasing household energy use


Generating knowledge & insights

that provides independent technical guidance for homeowners and support for industry

Increasing occupant comfort and reducing household energy demands by enabling a large-scale home retrofit scheme in one million Australian homes over the next five-ten years. 

Initiative objectives



A significant amount of collaborative work has been done across Australia to progress home energy efficiency and thermal performance retrofits.

In partnership with NSW Department Planning Industry and Environment, Vic Department Environment Land Water and Planning, Curtin University and UTS and an expert industry reference group, a research project was undertaken. ‘Pathways to scale: barriers to, opportunities from and impacts of retrofitting one million+ homes’ was a fast-track project for the RACE for 2030 CRC.

The project built knowledge and capability to leverage private investment and implement home retrofits, for the purpose of thermal and energy efficiency, in Australian homes.

The report distils the current research on the economic, environmental, and societal impacts of large-scale home retrofitting. Further the report provides insight to advance the design and development of a large-scale home retrofit scheme in Australia. It explores the scale of the retrofit market, finance options available, current policy and programs and the stakeholder landscape.

This work also informs the design of a larger, long-term scheme of research to support the development and implementation of a home retrofit scheme, to monitor and evaluate approaches to retrofitting, to support policy change and private investment and the opportunities for innovation to further accelerate action in parallel with practical implementation.

Phase 1 complete.

At a glance Full report








Phase 1 has set out a clear and achievable pathway for retrofitting Australian homes.

Phase 2 aims to test the delivery model for Retrofit Australia. It will initiate a home retrofit scheme through case studies and community prototypes across Australia.

Through these prototypes a business model will be established and proven, which will be able to attract private investment and support the large-scale roll out of thermal and energy efficiency retrofits across Australia.

Phase 2 will establish Retrofit Australia as a financially self-sustaining entity that can deliver home retrofits that will produce environmental, social and economic benefits to Australia.








Retrofit Australia will roll out a large-scale home retrofit scheme, leveraging private finance, that will create future ready homes that are highly thermal and energy efficient, can support or improve health, and provide a path to electrification.

The scheme will target retrofitting one million+ Australian homes over five years.

Why is this initiative needed?

Retrofitting Australian homes for thermal and energy efficiency will be a critical part of an effective climate change response.

Existing homes are not supporting our needs for comfort, efficiency, and resilience. Australia needs to transform our existing houses from ‘glorified tents’ into comfortable, desirable and efficient homes. This transformation will align with the energy transition and support homeowners as prosumers and consumers in the distributed energy grid. Maximising thermal and energy efficiency in homes and enabling electrification can support the transition toward net zero energy by reducing peak loads and supporting greater penetration of renewables into the grid.

Retrofits have been shown internationally and locally to yield benefits including:

  • Reducing mortality, hospitalisations and health costs
  • Reduce demands on the grid
  • Supporting economic activity, job growth and energy prices

Modelling of a selection of Australian homes has shown that retrofits offer decreased energy use at a household scale. A basic retrofit saves between 18% (in New South Wales, terrace home) and 31% (in Victoria, detached house) of energy use. In New South Wales and Western Australia, a comprehensive upgrade can obtain a near 100% saving in energy use.

Several pilot programs have demonstrated that retrofits can be effectively implemented and yield positive impacts. Climate change, rising energy prices and aging population mean it is now more critical than ever that our homes meet our current needs whilst also being future ready.

There is a large market opportunity in Australia, the task ahead is highly complex, yet feasible through collaborative efforts. And now more than ever before.

How will the Initiative fill this gap?

A large-scale home retrofit scheme can create jobs for Australian communities and provide comfortable homes that require less energy for heating and cooling for Australian households, whilst stimulating private finance and investment in the Australian home retrofit market.

International program examples from the United Kingdom, Europe, United States of America and New Zealand boost the reasoning for development and implementation of a large-scale home retrofit scheme in Australia. These programs demonstrate that retrofits can be effectively implemented and yield positive impacts including:

  • investment stimulation
  • energy savings
  • greenhouse gas emission reductions
  • employment and local business activity increases
  • good return on investment of public money (1:4+)
  • health benefits for home occupants
  • property value increases

Climate-KIC Australia’s ambition is to collaborate and lead the development and implementation of a thermal and energy efficiency retrofit scheme for Australian homes.

This is an opportunity for collaboration and partnership between homeowners, tenants, investors, industry, and government to develop, enable and implement the market demand and the ecosystem required to retrofit Australian homes and contribute to meeting our net zero emissions targets.

What is Climate-KIC Australia’s role?

Climate-KIC Australia are currently leading the Retrofit Australia portfolio of action by providing portfolio governance and management, as well as project oversight that enables the ecosystem, and in collaboration with our partners working toward delivering a large-scale home retrofit scheme for Australia.

Who we’re working with

Our office

Climate-KIC Australia
Bldg 10, 235 Jones Street
Ultimo, NSW 2007 Australia

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