News

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.

Financial support offered to encourage Scottish energy efficiency takeup

The option of an interest-free loan has been made available to homeowners through the Scottish government's Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS) scheme. 

Pimlico Plumbers records 32 consecutive months of turnover growth

Pimlico Plumbers has posted a 25% year-on-year rise in turnover with sales of £25million for its 2014 to 2015 financial year.

Renewables market supports proposals for 'solar revolution'

Renewables specialist Rexel UK has welcomed proposals from the new energy secretary, Amber Rudd, to implement a ‘solar revolution’ across the country.

Investment in training is essential to maintain RHI momentum

The plumbing and heating industry is being called to keep awareness of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) high on the agenda by proactively encouraging greater levels of installer training and mentorship support.  

New president appointed by CIPHE

The Chartered Institute of Plumbing & Heating Engineering (CIPHE) has elected Terry Stephenson as national president and Paul Williams as vice president in a ceremony held at its annual general meeting in Chester.

New home registrations remain 'encouraging'

New home registrations for 2015 remain at a higher level than last year with strong growth reported in May, according to figures released by NHBC.

Gas fitter fined for knowingly working without registration

A qualified gas fitter has been fined for deliberate breaches of Gas Safety regulations despite having worked in the gas industry for many years.

Gas Access Campaign to meet with government

The leaders of the Gas Access Campaign, who want a change in the law to improve gas safety, have been invited to discuss the campaign proposals with the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), Homes & Communities Agency (HCA) and other government stakeholders, at a meeting in Westminster in July.

New Home Improvement Guarantee Scheme 'offers installers peace of mind'

The Home Improvement Guarantee (HIG) scheme is seeking to expand its network of approved tradespeople to meet rising demand.

DIY aversion revealed in construction worker study

Almost half the UK's construction workers refuse to perform DIY jobs in their own home, according to a study conducted by a business insurance website.