News

Essential for homeowners to check credentials of tradespeople, says OFTEC

OFTEC has urged homeowners to check the qualifications of tradespeople before employing them following the conviction of a part time plumber for dangerous gas work and overcharging of customers.

Skills shortages underlying July construction slowdown will continue to get worse, PwC says

Skills shortages contributing to a slowdown in the construction sector in July pose a ‘serious challenge’ not only to the industry but the economy as a whole, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

Energy labelling report misses the elephant in the room

The EU Commission has recognised the short comings of the Energy labelling requirements but still misses the real point, says HEATFED.

'Perfect plumber' poll highlights personable character and awareness of new legislation as key traits

The attributes that make for the ‘perfect’ plumber have been identified by a survey conducted among installers by bathrooms manufacturer Bristan.

CIPHE launches safe water campaign

Most people living in the UK don’t give a second thought about ‘safe’ water – they turn on the tap and ‘hey presto’ clean water is dispensed.

Tradespeople avoid branding vans due to risk of theft and already having 'more than enough' work, survey finds

Forty per cent of tradespeople prefer to keep their van devoid of company name, contact details or industry accreditations, a survey of 200 trade workers across the UK has found.

Stockport heating firm fined for exposing workers to asbestos

A Stockport heating engineering firm has been sentenced after two of its engineers were exposed to asbestos while working on the site of a Manchester school.

Hertfordshire gas installer jailed for nine months for illegal work

A gas installer has been jailed after carrying out dangerous and illegal work at two homes in Hertfordshire.

Government should delay renewables support scheme cuts to avoid compensation claims, SNP says

The Scottish National Party (SNP) has called on the government to show flexibility on the grace period for implementing planned cuts to financial support for renewables to include all projects already in the planning process, warning it may face legal action if it does not.

CIPHE teams up with IdealPRO scheme

The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) has announced a partnership with IdealPRO, aiming to promote benefits of membership with the professional industry body.

Young British builders ditch construction-crisis home for the good life in New Zealand

Will Davies of property maintenance firm aspect.co.uk has warned the government to take note of the increasing number of young skilled British workers from the construction industry moving to New Zealand in search for a new life and better working conditions.

Zero carbon announcement a welcome kick-start for housebuilders

The Treasury’s recent announcement on the future of zero carbon homes is expected to result in “fewer financial burdens” for the construction sector, according to Worcester, Bosch Group.

Green Deal Finance Company responds to Green Deal funding cuts

The Green Deal Finance Company has announced that it will cease accepting applications for new Green Deal Plans with immediate effect. This is to ensure that sufficient funds exist to support those applications that have been lodged in recent weeks and are already being processed. 

Jail for fraudulent gas fitter who duped homeowners

A Leeds trader, who operated under several aliases, was jailed on 21 July for carrying out illegal gas work and putting a family at risk of serious injury, or even death. 

SME workloads rising due to skills shortage that threatens sector's recovery, says FMB

Rising activity in the SME construction sector threatens to be undermined by the prevailing skills shortage, warns the Federation of Master Builders (FMB), despite the fact that the building industry has been booming for more than two years.

End to Green Deal funding paves way for more workable regulation

The decision to cease funding for the Green Deal should prompt renewed focus on smarter regulation for the heating industry, says Worcester Bosch Group.

New commissioner to tackle late payment culture

Proposals for a new Small Business Commissioner to lead a culture change in how small businesses resolve disputes with larger companies have been set out by the Department for Business Innovation & Skills.

Merseyside plumbers encouraged to enter independent business awards

Plumbers and heating engineers in Liverpool are being encouraged to seek recognition for their work by entering the Merseyside Independent Business Awards (MIB).

Green Deal ‘dead in the water’

Further funding to the Green Deal Finance Company (GDFC) has been cut and there will be no further releases of the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund (GDHIF), the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) announced on 22 July.

Green Deal funding axed

In light of low take-up and concerns about industry standards there will be no further funding to the Green Deal Finance Company, in a move to protect taxpayers, the Department for Energy & Climate Change announced on 23 July.

OFTEC calls on boiler manufacturers to be responsible when quoting Energy Savings Data

OFTEC Ireland has issued a reminder to boiler manufacturers regarding the use of energy savings data in trade and general advertising.

Feed in Tariff scheme to be reviewed

Measures to deal with a projected over-allocation of renewable energy subsidies were announced by the Conservative Government on 22 July.

Almost 90% of Brits could be overspending on their heating bills due to hard water, YouGov Poll shows.

Almost nine out of 10 people in the UK could be spending hundreds of pounds more than they need to on their heating bills simply because of the hardness of their water, according to a survey by YouGov.

Help to shape the Home Quality Mark

The views of industry and the public on the new Home Quality Mark (HQM), a national quality rating scheme due to begin operating in October this year, are being sought by HQM’s developer, BRE.

Industry urges Chancellor to reconsider zero carbon policy

More than 200 businesses from the construction, property and renewable energy industries have urged the Chancellor to reconsider the government's sudden U-turn over the long-established zero carbon homes policy.

Manhattan Showers goes into liquidation

Manhattan Showers has announced it went in to voluntary liquidation on 14 July, 2015.

Risk of 'heat related deaths' in UK eco homes

A new report has warned of the health risks caused by overheating in energy efficient homes.

Proposed changes aim to simplify energy labelling

As part of the Energy Union strategy, the European Commission has proposed a revision of the energy efficiency labelling laws.

Government's new home zero carbon policy abandonment is 'oversight', Baxi says

The government’s decision not to proceed with the zero carbon homes scheme and complementary Allowable Solutions programme is an "oversight" that leaves developers “standing at the edge of a cliff” as they face delivering near-zero carbon homes to comply with a 2019 EU Directive, according to boiler manufacturer Baxi.

Industry report calls for workable heat policy

The UK government must make a long term commitment to a single workable heat policy, if the fourth carbon budget targets are to be achieved, says the Heating & Hotwater Industry Council (HHIC).

SMEs want government action on 'red tape' removal, survey suggests

Two fifths of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) operating in the construction sector say that the most positive action the new government could take to benefit their company would be to reduce excessive regulation.

ATAG Heating UK changes its focus

ATAG Heating UK has announced it will change its business focus to concentrate on the commercial and domestic newbuild boiler markets.

Industry must turn 'challenges into opportunities'

The Building & Engineering Services Association (B&ES) must help its members tackle the challenges that lie ahead for the market, according to newly elected president Jim Marner.

UK's van drivers' contribution to economy is growing, according to report

A total of £120 billion was contributed to the UK economy by van-dependent businesses in 2014, up 16% on 2010 figures, according to a new Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) report.

Zero carbon policies for new homes scrapped, causing concern over energy efficiency future

Government will not proceed with the Zero Carbon Allowable Solutions carbon offsetting scheme, or the proposed 2016 increase in on-site energy efficiency standards for new homes, Chancellor George Osborne announced on 9 July.

Provisional findings from energy market investigation suggest customers could save £160 by switching provider

The Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) has today published its provisional findings after a comprehensive year-long investigation into the energy market.

Crucial safety information more accessible following launch of Gas Safe Register scheme, says UKLPG

Installers’ access to safety and risk compliance has been improved with the launch of Gas Safe Register’s Access to Standards scheme, says the chief executive of UK Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association (UKLPG).

Greater apprenticeship investment required to meet future needs, WaterSafe says

A change in the attitude towards apprenticeships is necessary for the plumbing sector to meet anticipated demand, online plumber search provider WaterSafe has said.

2015 Budget: A mixed response from industry

The construction industry has given a mixed response to today's Budget by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne.

2015 Budget: At A Glance

The first Conservative-only Budget since 1996 was delivered today by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne.

Suffolk builder fined over illegal gas work carried out in Hertfordshire

Illegal and dangerous gas work at a home in Ringshall, Hertfordshire has led to a Suffolk builder being fined.

Amendments to RHI regulations bring scheme in line with ErP

Government has announced the laying of the new regulations for both the domestic and non-domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) Schemes.

Issues facing self-employed workers to be subject of independent review

An independent review of self-employment in the UK is to be led by Julie Deane OBE, with the aim of discovering the challenges and opportunities facing those who wish to work for themselves.

Open letter urges Chancellor to commit to 5% reduced VAT rate on renewables

An open letter was today sent to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, urging the government to affirm their support of current VAT rules that permit a reduced rate of VAT on energy saving products.

Nearly half of UK van drivers costing businesses with overloaded vehicles, study says

Over 1.2 million vans on UK roads are carrying loads in excess of national weight regulations, new research suggests.

Encourage flatpack homes and self-builds to beat UK housing crisis, report says

Modular off-site building of prefabricated homes could be the key to solving the UK’s broken housing market, according to a report by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE).

EUA calls on the Chancellor to commit to the RHI in the forthcoming summer budget

As the summer budget approaches the Energy & Utilities Alliance is calling on the Chancellor to commit to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

Customers prefer 'word of mouth' to searching online

Customers prefer to source a tradesperson through word of mouth recommendations rather than by responding to online advertising, according to research by WaterSafe.

Triple success at SkillPLUMB heats

Plumbing skills have been on display around the country at the English regional SkillPLUMB heats.

Trade association celebrates 90-year anniversary

The Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors (APHC) is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, as it continues to represent the interests of members across England and Wales.

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