June 6 deadline heralds major changes in glazing regs

homeproOnce again, the window and door industry in England and Wales is undergoing major changes in regulations on standards and guarantees that will place every window installer – and many other trade sectors – under a whole new raft of legal obligations.

The biggest change is that, as of June 6, it will be mandatory for every Competent Person Scheme member to give every customer financial protection on every installation. It is no longer an option simply to offer an Insurance Backed Guarantee (IBG) – every homeowner must be given one for every installation.

The changes also see new rules regarding the Minimum Technical Competence (MTC) Card, verifying the holder’s abilities in domestic window and door installation and surveying. These changes mean there must be at least one cardholder present at every installation and, with some exceptions, every survey must be carried out by a cardholder. The Department for Communities and Local Government requires that all Competent Person Schemes must verify the competence of all surveyors and installers in this way.

UK IBG provider, HomePro, recently revealed that as many as 80% of domestic window installation companies surveyed were still not up to speed with the changes. Compliance manager, Jim Keane, said this was a very worrying result, especially as any installation carried out under any Competent Person Scheme but not complying with the new rules would not qualify for self-assessment.

He added: “It is quick and easy for installers to register for a HomePro IBG and they are widely accepted by self-assessment bodies such as FENSA and CERTASS. If installers take just a few moments to learn the new regs, they can make the most of our IBGs but any installer who gets it wrong may risk not being able to register their work by self-assessment.

“Like any new legislation, it may take a little while for people to get used to it, but once they have had time to absorb a few new working practices, everything should fall into place naturally. And of course, any of our customers are welcome to contact us at any time if they need further clarification.”

,Some of the forthcoming changes to regulations at a glance:

• A mandatory IBG covering the product guarantee (see: www.homepro.com/HomeProInsurance)
,• The IBG to include mandatory cover against breaches of all applicable aspects of Building Regulations (not just Part L)
,• Any IBG not incorporating these changes by the June deadline will not qualify to register installations under self-assessment
,• A MTC qualified installer will need to be present at every installation. Anyone carrying out a survey will also need to be assessed (unless they can show they are under the supervision of a competent surveyor)

Further details of the changes in legislation can be found at www.homepro.com

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