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7 June 2012

Higher standards for self-check building trade

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by Gill Montia

Higher standards for self-check building trade

New measures have been put in place to help protect home owners from cowboy builders, Communities Minister Andrew Stunell has announced.

Tradesmen such as window and boiler installers who operate under schemes that allow them to check their own work are now required to meet higher standards and prove they meet the right levels of quality.

The measures also ensure that householders have a financial safety net in place, such as a guarantee or insurance, if self-check installers fail to finish work properly or if they can’t be chased through the courts.

Organisations running self-check schemes now need to:

Be accredited to an international quality standard in order to operate.

Assess that their members’ competence levels and actual work are up to national standards.

Promote the membership and use of their schemes.

Mr Stunell, says: “We are determined to keep the cowboys from infecting self-check schemes, which let hardworking competent tradesman get on with providing high quality work, quickly and at fair prices.”

He adds: “By raising the bar even higher for self-check tradesman, we are sorting the rogues from the professionals, making it easier for people to identify competent installers and giving them the confidence that they will receive a high quality of work – or be protected if they don’t.”

Around 85,000 complaints are made about building work in homes each year, according to the Office of Fair Trading.

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