TrustMark warns of rogue traders cashing in on green deal home repairs
By editor | 01 Oct, 2012
Led by TrustMark, the Government endorsed quality scheme that signposts people to reputable local tradesmen, the group has voiced its concerns about a huge wave of ‘ancillary works’ – repairs and other home improvement work that will be triggered by the Green Deal scheme, but which will fall outside the scheme’s consumer protection requirements. It is calling for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to reinstate important safeguards into the Green Deal Code of Practice.
Liz Male, Chairman of TrustMark says: “We are united in our desire for a more energy efficient housing stock. But our major concern revolves around an unfortunate decision earlier this summer to drop any safeguards in the Green Deal Code of Practice, regarding what have been called ‘ancillary works’.
“In effect, the basic home repairs and maintenance that will inevitably be required before Green Deal improvements can be made to our homes. We want to see homeowners clearly signposted to where they can find reputable firms to do this work, tradesmen who are properly vetted, insured and working to the well-established Government-endorsed standards that already exist in this market.”
She continues: “We see the Green Deal, and the ancillary works it will create, as a positive opportunity for domestic building led growth in the economy. But we also see the importance of Government leadership in this area – if it is promoting opportunities to households and encouraging them to undertake all sorts of refurbishment and building works, it is equally essential to help people avoid the rogue traders (who will also be aware of the opportunities).
“We believe the Green Deal Code of Practice must include an obligation upon Green Deal Providers and others to signpost domestic customers to reputable firms through TrustMark or members of Competent Person's schemes. We also strongly recommend that an integrated, coordinated communications campaign via Government, industry and consumer protection groups is established, to ensure consumers are aware of the limits of Green Deal protection, as well as the benefits.”
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