Trading Standards warn householders about traders offering home energy product installation
Highland Council’s Trading Standards and the Climate Change & Energy Team are joining forces to warn unsuspecting householders and Health Centres to be on their guard if they are approached by traders offering funding for the installation of home energy products.
This follows recent reports from two GP Practices in the Fort William area, who have been asked to assess patients for an offer of home energy products under Government funded schemes, implying they are approved by Highland Council when this is not the case.
Mark McGinty, Trading Standards Team Leader at Highland Council, said: “This is yet again another instance where the complex marketplace for the provision of such products has led to rogue traders seeking to take advantage. I’d urge any householder to check first the validity of any scheme, product, installer and payment before entering into a contract, whether it is free or not.”
Highland Council recently published a Statement of Intent for Energy Company Obligation 4 Flex (ECO4 Flex) and Great British Insulation Scheme Flex (GBIS Flex). To be eligible for ECO4 Flex and GBIS Flex, you need to be homeowner or private rented tenant and the property needs to have a EPC SAP rating D-G. Further details can be found on the Council website. Please also be aware Highland Council does not endorse ‘door knocking’/ ‘cold calling’.
The website will include information on all live funding opportunities in the Highland region supported by Highland Council and installers approved to undertake works.
Isla MacMillan, Project Manager in the Climate Change & Energy team, Highland Council said: “We urge householder’s approached by installers offering energy efficiency measures under the ECO4 Flex or GBIS Flex schemes to check the approved installers list on the Council website or email ECOflex.Highlands@highland.gov.uk. Installers approved by the Highland Council will not engage in ‘door knocking’/ ‘cold calling’ and will engage with households via social media channels or letters to households.
Mr McGinty added: “It is an offence for any trader to claim to operate under the approval of a scheme without the appropriate approval or authority. Highland Council Trading Standards will investigate complaints received and will take appropriate action should any offences be detected.”
Further information on schemes to provide free home energy improvements can be found by contacting Home Energy Scotland for free on 0808 808 2282 callers will be given free and impartial advice.
If you wish to make a complaint because you feel you have been misled by a trader offering such works you should contact Trading Standards partner agency Advice Direct Scotland on telephone 0808 164 6000 or at www.consumeradvice.scot