Design for Performance is the process whereby a developer or owner commits to design, build and commission a new office development or major refurbishment to achieve a specific NABERS Energy rating.


The UK has a design-for-compliance culture which has led to the well-known ‘performance gap’ that exists between original design intent and how a building truly performs in-use.

Why use Design for Performance?


There are many reasons why a project should implement Design for Performance, including:

  • Increased likelihood of achieving a net zero carbon development in operation by bridging the performance gap between design intent and operations
  • Attraction of blue chip and/or anchor tenants, who often value or have requirements for sustainable buildings
  • Reduced capital costs by specifying more appropriately sized plant and equipment
  • Increased likelihood of achieving your desired build quality and operational performance
  • Marketing and communications opportunities
  • Respected process involving an expert third-party, Independent Design Review to highlight risks and opportunities

Read more about Design for Performance in our Fact Sheet.

The Design for Performance process


This flow diagram illustrates the Design for Performance process from Committing to a NABERS Energy Target Rating through to obtaining a full licence to promote your Design Reviewed Target Rating. Following this step, developers must reach out to a NABERS Licensed Assessor listed on GreenBookLive to register to NABERS Energy for Offices and obtain a NABERS Rating when the building is operational.

Find a Licensed Assessor

Please note: customers can obtain a NABERS Energy Rating for their operational buildings without having gone through the Design for Performance process.


1. Sign an agreement
Sign the Design for Performance Agreement and pay the fee.

  • (please ensure you are using the most recent version of the DfP Agreement available on the website as this is regularly updated!)
  • We’ll send you a counter-signed Agreement.
  • You will then be able to promote your target Energy rating using approved wording.
    Please note, if you want to promote your Target Rating, you must sign a DfP Agreement. If you haven’t signed a Design for Performance Agreement but have begun the Design for Performance process, you will not be able to obtain an Independent Design Review Certificate or promote your Target Rating until signing and paying the fees. Please see Schedule 1 of the Design for Performance Agreement for approved wording on marketing material.


2. Design, document and model

  • Design the building or space to operate at the target Energy rating nominated in your Design for Performance Agreement.
  • Prepare the model, simulation report and minimum documentation as detailed in the Guide to Design for Performance.


3. Get an Independent Design Review (IDR) report

  • Contract a member of the Independent Design Review (IDR) Panel (contact details available in the table below)  to review the project and obtain an IDR report as detailed in the Guide to Design for Performance.


4. Submit the IDR report

  • Email the IDR report to [email protected]
  • After we’ve approved the report, you’ll have a full licence to promote your target rating. This includes using the NABERS Design for Performance certificate and logo.


5. Get a NABERS Energy rating once the project is in operation

  • Arrange for a NABERS Accredited Assessor to carry out an Energy for Offices rating on the premises to demonstrate whether you’ve met your target Energy rating. This rating will be based on 12 months of real, operational energy usage. You can get in contact with a NABERS UK Licensed assessor for your project here.

Is my building eligible for NABERS Design for Performance?


Your building is eligible if it’s an office development that is either a new build or major refurbishment, and in the Design Stages (upto RIBA Stage 5).

To find out more about the steps, rights and obligations involved in Design for Performance, email us at [email protected]

Design for Performance register


The tables below list the design for performance projects that have set a NABERS energy target rating, To see the projects that have received their certified Design Review Target Ratings, please go to GreenBookLive.

The projects outlined below are the first in the UK to implement this pioneering approach to office design and delivery, stimulating project supply chains and providing the real-life evidence of how the energy performance gap can be closed.


Design for Performance register The following developments are Pioneering Design for Performance:

Building DetailsApplicantBuilding typeRating typeCommitment typeTarget star rating
1 Broadgate, LondonBritish LandOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
19-35 Baker Street, LondonDerwent LondonOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4
4 Angel Square, Noma, ManchesterFederated Hermes/MEPCOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
11 & 12 Wellington Place, LeedsFederated Hermes/MEPCOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
New City Court, 8-26 St Thomas Street, LondonGreat Portland EstatesOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
2 Ruskin Square, CroydonStanhopeOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4.5
2 Aldermanbury SquareKnighton Estates LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Timber SquareLandsecOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Network BuildingDerwent London No.6OfficeNew BuildingBase Building4.5
3 Westfield avenue at Stratford CrossIQL S4 TrustOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4


The following developments are Design for Performance projects:

Building DetailsApplicantBuilding TypeRating TypeCommitment TypeTarget Star Rating
Worship Square, LondonHB Reavis UK LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
30 Semple Street, EdinburghThe BBC Pension Trust per CBREGI c/o Corran Properties Ltd.OfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Southbank, Globe point, Globe Road, LeedsASE II Globe Point LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4.5
Southbank, One Globe SquareASE II Globe Point LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
STAC, Building 6, Buchanan WharfDrum Buchanan Wharf 4 LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4
28 St Andrew SquareAviva InvestorsOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
EdenEnglish Cities FundOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5.5
EQ Victoria St, Redcliffe, BristolASE Ill (Bristol) LimitedOfficeNew buildingBase Building5
90 Long Acre, LondonNorthwood Investors 90 LA LtdOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
The Forge, 105 Sumner St, LondonLS 105 Sumner St Developer LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
105 Victoria St, LondonSweco UK LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
33 Charterhouse St, LondonCharterhouse Street LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Elshaw House, Wellington St, SheffieldOve Arup & Partners LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
81 Newgate Street, LondonNG Devco LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
42 Wigmore StreetStandard Life Assurance LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
135 Park StreetEmerson PropCo SARLOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
1 Exchange Square, LondonPNBJ I LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
TempoLegal & General Assurance (Pensions Management) LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
21 Bloomsbury StreetVenture Real Estate LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
Space HouseSLQR Trustee No 1 Ltd and SLQR Trustee No 2 Ltd as Co Trustees for SLQR Trust No 3 OfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
HavelockBridgewater Manchester (Luxembourg) Holding SarlOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
Royal Street Plot ASB Royal Holdings LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Royal Street Plot CSB Royal Holdings LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Royal Street Plot DSB Royal Holdings LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Royal Street Plot ESB Royal Holdings LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
1210 Arlington Business ParkCapitaLandOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4
Woolgate ExchangeBNP PARIBAS JERSEY TRUST CORPORATION LIMITED OfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4
10 Station RoadAviva InvestorsOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4.5
Project Unicorn (Nuffield House & Pegasus House)Aviva InvestorsOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4.5
101 MoorgateAviva InvestorsOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Canada Water, Plot F2, LondonBL CW Developments Plot F1 F2 F3 Company LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5.5
Angel Square, 1 Torrens Street, LondonTishman SpeyerOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
1210 Arlington Business Park, ThealeCapitaLandOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4
76 Upper Ground, LondonWolfe Commercial Properties (Southbank) Ltd OfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
Clarendon HouseCTCL (BUKP) Fund Nominee No1 Limited & CTCL (BUKP) Fund Nominee No2 Limited, abrdn UK Real Estate FundOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
N2, 10-12 Bressenden PlaceNova Developer LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4
No.3 Circle SquareBruntwood Circle Square 12 LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Building 4, The HeightsKWF Heights LtdOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
7 Millbank, Westminister HouseBaola Properties LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
11 Belgrave Road, PimlicoQuadrum Belgrave LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5.5
Power Road Studio 5Akoya Power Road LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Southwark OSD TTL Properties Ltd OfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
72 Upper GroundMEC London Property 3 (General Partner) LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
1000 Hillswood DriveLegal & General Investment ManagementOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
40 LeadenhallVanquish Properties GP LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
IslandIsland Site (General Partner) LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
120 Fleet StreetRiver Court Properties LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
LucentLS 1 Sherwood Street Developer LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4.5
Bourne 100SRE Bourne LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
New Victoria ManchesterToriview LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
YY LondonQuadrant Estates LLPOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building 5
334 Oxford Street334 Ramsbury Oxford LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
Cardiff - InterchangeLegal & General Resources LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
TBC LondonFORE JERSEY X LIMITED OfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5.5
7 Devonshire SquareCG Cutlers Gardens LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building 5
63-81 Pelham Street Wellcome Trust Limited c/o M3 ConsultingOfficeNew BuildingBase Building4.5
55 Old Broad StreetLand Securities Properties LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building 5
13-17 Fitzroy StreetDGE Fitzroy Street LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4
1 Museum StreetHoare Lea LLPOfficeNew BUildingBase Building6
100 New Bridge StreetHelical PlcOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
Elgin HouseElgin Haymarket LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Water Lane Block ASouthside Leeds LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Water Lane Block BSouthside Leeds LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Red Lion Court Land Securities Properties LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
The Poulton, MayfieldMayfield Poulton LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5.5
5 New Street SquareLand Securities Properties LtdOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
100 Gray's Inn RoadLawnmist LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building6
The Republic, MayfieldMayfield Republic LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
The GridThe Grid JV Ltd OfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
DAS HouseLGIMOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5.5
Timber SquareLandsecOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Kensington OlympiaOlympus Property Holding LtdOfficeNew BUildingBase Building5
Three Chamberlain SquareMEPC LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
58 Mosley StreetM&G TS Mosley LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
UNO Golden LaneAvasha LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
Huntington EstateBC (Shoreditch) LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Portland HouseLS Cardinal LtdOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building5
3 Sheldon SquarePaddington Central I LPOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
25 MoorgateBREEVA II Moorgate LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
3 New Street SquareLand Securities Properties LimitedOfficeRefurbishmentBase Building4.5
Hill HouseLS Hill House Developer LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5.5
14-21 Holborn ViaductRoyal London UK Real Estate FundOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
190 Norfolk StreetGrantside (Norfolk Street) LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
1-5 Lower MarshOslo Holdings LimitedOfficeMajor RefurbishmentBase Building5
SoapworksSoapworks Development S.A.R.LOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
10 Spring GardenThe Crown EstateOfficeMajor RefurbishmentBase Building5
The MarkPBBE MARK LANE B.VOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5.5
St.Michael's Phase 1St. Michael's UK Propco LtdOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5.5
70 Chancery LaneWSPOfficeMajor RefurbishmentWhole Building4.5
99 QVS 99 Queen Victoria Street 2 LimitedOfficeMajor RefurbishmentBase Building5
Wells HouseThe Prudential Assurance Company LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
65 Tabernacle Street65TS LimitedOfficeNew BuildingBase Building5
Silbury HouseRO Property Management LimitedOfficeTenancyMajor Refurbishment4.5
65 Gresham StreetHavisham Investments LimitedOfficeBase BuildingMajor Refurbishment5
5 St PhillipsThe Royal London Mutual Insurance Society LimitedOfficeMajor RefurbishmentBase Building4
7 Princes StreetPrinces Court Acquico S.a.r.lOffice Major RefurbishmentBase Building5
New Zealand HouseThe Crown EstateOfficeMajor RefurbishmentBase Building5
19 Cornwall StKier Cornwall St LLPOfficeMajor RefurbishmentBase Building5

For Design Review Target Ratings, please go to GreenBookLive to see all Certified DfP Projects that have received their Design Review Target Rating.

How to register your interest
Email us at [email protected] to register your interest in starting the Design for Performance process.


Independent Design Review Panel

As part of the Design for Performance process you’ll need to engage a member of the Independent Design Review Panel to conduct a review of your design documentation and model.

If you have technical questions regarding your project’s application to Design for Performance, you can contact an Independent Design Review panellist who will be able to assist you

Please see the list of members to the Independent Design Review Panel;


Independent Design Review Panel

Full NameSurnameEmailCompany
ClaireDas Bhaumik[email protected]Inkling
DarrenCoppins[email protected]Built Physics
DavidKingstone[email protected]Buro Happold
GlenIrwin[email protected]Cundall
GraceFoo[email protected]DeltaQ
GregWaring[email protected]ARUP
HughGordon[email protected]Hilson Moran
JenniferElias[email protected]Atelier Ten
JimSaywell[email protected]PAE
RobertMarshall[email protected]Watkins Payne Partnership
StephenHill[email protected]ARUP

The Example Simulation Report demonstrates the key features of a simulation report compliant with the requirements of a Design for Performance Agreement. As a part of the Independent Design Review process, this report guides those who are producing a Simulation Report for their Independent Design Review.

Downloads & Publications


All downloads are available on the ‘Useful Downloads‘ page.

Any DfP projects wishing to follow the previous versions of the Rules:

  • NABERS UK The Rules – Energy for Offices v1.2 (base building only)
  • NABERS UK The Rules – Metering and Consumption v1.1 (base building only)
  • NABERS UK – Guide to Design for Performance v1.1 (base building only)


should submit their completed Design for Performance Agreement to BRE by 31st July 2023. After this date the current (v2) Rules will be applicable.