Visions for buildings of the future – Opening a 'Home for Life'


Monday 20 April saw the official opening of the first of six CO2 neutral experimental houses to be built in five European countries as part of the VELUX Model Home 2020 concept.

The house is located in Lystrup outside Denmark's second-largest city Århus and leads the way to the next generation of climate-neutral buildings.

The building industry is facing serious challenges in terms of buildings of the future. Statistics show that people in the EU spend 90 % of their time indoors and buildings account for 40 % of all energy consumption. VELUX sees it as part of the company's responsibility to enter into a dialogue with relevant stakeholders to find the optimal solutions to meet these future challenges. Model Home 2020 is part of VELUX strategy to take an active part in developing sustainable buildings of the future, designed to synthesise a perfect balance of energy efficiency, indoor climate, architecture and leading cleantech solutions.

"This is an important step towards a new vision for buildings of the future. 'Home for Life' demonstrates that we can tackle the climate challenges by reducing CO2 emissions through the application of renewable energy without compromising on our demands to daylight and fresh air," says Lone Feifer, Strategic Project Manager, VELUX A/S.

One experiment is better than…
VELUX has a long tradition of working with experiments and Model Home 2020 is a natural continuation of that tradition. VELUX founder Villum Kann Rasmussen's philosophy was that 'One experiment is worth more than a thousand expert assumptions'. Each of the six houses of the Model Home concept is an experiment with the purpose of bringing us closer to the vision of designing a home that reflects the balance between climate, architecture and daylight while also developing inspiration for new standards in CO2 neutral buildings.

'Home for Life' systematically uses the energy from the sun. The daylight area of the house is twice the size of the daylight area of a conventional low-energy building. Strategically placed solar-cell operated roof windows offer a balanced amount of daylight to the bedrooms and the kitchen-dining room area. All roof windows have dynamic, solar-cell operated blinds on the inside and awnings on the outside. This is a family home that actually produces more energy than it consumes.

"We have built an energy-efficient house that is both comfortable to live in and offers visual appeal. That is at the heart of the concept of the holistic home – it caters for people's health and well-being while also actively using renewable energy from the sun. We combine the features of our products to admit daylight and heat into the home, reduce heat loss at night and also manage to control the indoor climate, says Lone Feifer.

Facts about 'Home for Life'
The house is 190 m2 and comprises 1 1/2 storey. The window area (vertical windows and roof windows) is equivalent to 40 % of the floor area.

It has four roof windows facing south and eight windows facing north. All roof windows are with triple glazing and they are fitted with interior decorative blinds and exterior awnings that protect effectively against heating in the summer (up to 90 %) and insulates against heat loss through the windows in the winter.

All roof windows are with io-homecontrol®, which is an electronic control system that helps ensure a comfortable indoor climate and minimal energy consumption, e.g. by closing windows and blinds at night to avoid heat loss, thus minimising the energy loss at night considerably.

The VELUX systems solution comprises roof windows, sun screening and electronic control features combined with VELUX installation products for optimised installation with minimum heat loss and insulation properties.

It also comprises VELUX solar collectors designed for installation in combination with roof windows. They exploit the heat of the sun while providing a visually appealing and technically optimal solution.

In 'Home for Life', VELUX is also launching a new product which makes the intelligent systems solution CO2 neutral – windows and sun screening open and close using solar-cell operated batteries so no connection to the mains is necessary.

More information
You can read more about 'Home for Life' at

More information
'Home for Life' was built as a joint venture by VELUX and VELFAC in association with architects aart arkitekter and consultants Esbensen Rådgivende Ingeniører. The other participants in the project group are: WindowMaster, Sonnenkraft, Ingeniørhøjskolen i Århus, Alexandra Instituttet, Arkitektskolen Aarhus, Statens Byggeforskningsinstitut and Århus Kommune. KFS-Boligbyg constructed the building.

About Model Home 2020
VELUX has launched its own vision for sustainable buildings of the future, a concept by the name of Model Home 2020. Our objective is to create climate-neutral buildings that optimise indoor climate, fresh air and daylight. 'Home for Life' is the first of six houses to be built in Europe as part of the Model Home 2020 concept. The two houses in Denmark will be built as a joint venture by VELFAC and VELUX.

More details, please see