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New Green Deal Code outlined

The Government has outlined how consumers will be protected under the Green Deal.

Initiatives include a ‘Green Deal advice line’ and an independent body established to ensure standards are met.

Greg Barker said: “The Green Deal will be the biggest home improvement programme since the Second World War shifting our outdated draughty homes from the past into the future, so it’s vital people can trust it. I have heard too many cases of shoddy workmanship or dodgy technology from Government schemes in the past so from day one there will be strict rules about standards, information will be readily available and there will be a proper route for complaints.

“We’ve already started putting in place the foundations for this and I am pleased the United Kingdom Accreditation Service has been formally appointed to ensure that installers and assessors will meet the necessary standards when the Green Deal starts next year.”

In a new document published today entitled ‘Consumer Protection in the Green Deal’, DECC has set out its plans for consumer protection and redress. The document includes:

• Plans to set up a new Green Deal Code – to protect customers at every stage of the Green Deal from initial assessment to installation.
• Plans to set up a new Green Deal advice line – this will provide impartial advice and referral to accredited Green Deal assessors, installers and providers as well as a route for any complaints.
• The formal appointment of the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) – which will ensure assessors and installers adhere to robust standards in order to participate in the Green Deal.

The UK Green Building Council (UK-GBC) welcomed the announcement by Government. “Last week Government recognised it needed to address the cost of Green Deal finance, by using the Green Investment Bank as a vehicle to attract private investment. This week Government has taken important actions to safeguard the consumer,” Paul King, chief executive of the UK Green Building Council said. “These are encouraging steps towards ensuring the Green Deal is a success and are to be welcomed. The next big challenge is how to incentivise take-up on a mass scale.”

The FMB supports this initiative, and believes the Green Deal is also a chance to make further progress on driving up standards in the building industry. Brian Berry, FMB director of external affairs said: "Shoddy installations have the potential to endanger lives and this must be avoided at all costs. Equally consumers have to be confident they are getting a good deal when they sign up, which is why each package of improvement measures has to deliver the expected energy savings.

“Good products and the correct installation are all part of this, but the consumer may still be put off by the cost of more expensive measures or the length of time it takes to pay back the Green Deal provider, especially as the cost of guaranteeing the work is ultimately passed on."