Your path to funding in Germany

The funding jungle in Germany is becoming increasingly opaque. Some subsidies are being dropped, while new ones are being added. In addition, there are regional subsidies. And compared to other European countries, the German funding pots are not in first place. Here we try to give a rough overview of what support is currently available to ordinary citizens in Germany.

The Reconstruction Loan Corporation (KfW)

With this funding, electricity and heat generation systems are supported. The same applies to the associated storage tanks, whereby these are always supported in connection with a photovoltaic system that is no older than five years. Up to EUR 10,200 in subsidies can be collected here for solar systems plus storage plus wallbox.

KfW Loan 270 – Renewable Energies Standard

This funding supports electricity and heat generation systems. Likewise, associated storage units, whereby these are always supported in connection with a photovoltaic system that is not older than five years. Up to EUR 10,200 in subsidies can be collected here for solar systems plus storage plus wallbox. The calculation of the maximum subsidy is shown opposite.

 Subsidy per unitSubsidy amount
Photovoltaics 10 kWp x 600 EUR6000 EUR
Battery storage12 kWh x 250 EUR3000 EUR
Wallbox charging stationFlat rate 600 EUR600 EUR
Bidirectional chargingFlat rate 600 EUR600 EUR
Maximum subsidy amount 10'200 EUR

In fact, the focus is increasingly on the «grid-serving integration» of photovoltaic systems, i.e. the controlled feed-in of solar electricity and the stabilisation of the grids through decentralised storage. So these are increasingly being promoted preferentially.

Regional storage subsidies

Regionally, only Berlin and Bavaria currently still offer an additional subsidy programme for storage systems, while in other federal states these have already expired.

In Berlin, battery storage systems are subsidised by the «SolarPlus» programme with 300 euros per kWh, which is limited to 15'000 euros. The Berlin subsidy conditions expect a performance ratio of photovoltaic system to storage capacity of at least 1.2 kWp to 1.0 kWh. A current value guarantee of 10 years on the battery must be guaranteed. A feed-in limitation of 50 percent at the grid feed-in point is also required, i.e. self-consumption must be at least 50 percent. Furthermore, the requirements of the «Safety Guide for Li-Ion Home Storage Systems» as well as the application rules and the grid connection guidelines of the VDE must be followed. In addition, there is the «solar system bonus», which subsidises façade photovoltaics, green roof systems and photovoltaics suitable for listed buildings.

In Bavaria, battery storage is subsidised with 500 euros per 5 kWh of storage capacity. Each additional kilowatt hour is subsidised with a further 75 euros/kWh. The ratio between nominal photovoltaic power and storage capacity must be at least one to one here.

Even though the subsidies for storage systems in Baden-Württemberg have already been exhausted, it is still possible to apply for subsidies for storage systems through the «Wohnen in Zukunft» programme.

In general, it makes sense to ask in your own municipality. Some cities offer subsidies. Find out more about this at the relevant environmental office. It would go beyond the scope of this article to list the regional subsidies here, especially since these subsidies cannot be updated here in a timely manner, as the budgets are often exhausted after only a few months.

For each funding programme, the installation of the photovoltaic systems and storage units may only begin once a confirmation of receipt of the funding application has been received. Early application is very important. Furthermore, several subsidies may not be combined.

KfW Loan 261 – Residential buildings

Prerequisites for this loan are a building application that dates back at least five years and the property must be renovated to at least KfW Efficiency House Standard 85. This also applies to the purchase of flats if the costs for the energy-efficient refurbishment are shown separately. The maximum loan amount is 120'000 euros. Depending on the efficiency house standard, a repayment subsidy of five to 20 percent is granted. If the renewable energy class is achieved, there is a loan amount of 150'000 euros and a further five percent repayment subsidy.

KfW Loan 124/134 – Home Ownership Programme

This programme applies to the purchase or construction of a condominium or cooperative shares for owner-occupation. The maximum loan amount is 100'000 euros.

KfW Loan 159 – Conversion for the elderly

KfW provides up to EUR 50'000 to make a house or flat fit for old age. Burglary protection measures are also eligible.

KfW Loan 297/298 – Climate-friendly new construction

If a new building or first-time purchase of a property meets at least the Efficiency House Standard 40, the «Sustainable Construction Plus» requirements and is not heated with gas, oil or biomass, a loan of up to EUR 150'000 is possible.

KfW Loan 300 – Home ownership for families

Single parents and families with children under 18 years of age and a taxable income of up to EUR 60,000 for one child are eligible for this promotional programme. For each additional child, the income limit increases by 10'000 euros. Only first-time purchases that meet the requirements of the «Klimafreundlicher Neubau» programme are eligible. The maximum loan amount is between 140'000 and 240'000 euros.

BAFA grants

Depending on the measure, grants from the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (BAFA) are also available. Various measures such as insulation of the building envelope, systems engineering and heating optimisation are granted subsidies of ten to 30 percent. A bonus of five to ten percent is also possible. Consultancy fees (max. 1'300 euros) or specialist planning (max. 5'000 euros) are also partially financially supported.

Tax bonus

The tax bonus amounting to 20 percent of the eligible costs can be an alternative if no energy consultant can be found and a BAFA grant is therefore not possible. It is granted for the insulation of the roof, façade, storey ceilings and window replacement as well as the optimisation of the heating system. In the first and second year, the tax liability is reduced by seven percent of the costs, in the third year by six percent.