Following on from the recent inclusion in the ECO3 regulations, TrustMark, the only Government Endorsed Quality Scheme, is offering an additional level of consumer protection and trade accreditation to both householders and tradespeople looking to do any repair, maintenance or improvement work in or around the home.
In partnership with Buckinghamshire & Surrey Trading Standards, the two government organisations are delivering the ‘Trading Standards Approval’ scheme to help consumers gain confidence when looking to employ a trader. The scheme is an accreditation that reassures and protects homeowners that the firm they employ to work in their home complies with TrustMark Government-endorsed quality for workmanship, understands fair trading practices and has consumer protection as an integral part of their business.
The scheme, which is being delivered by local authorities across the UK, gives firms local reassurance with national recognition. It also provides firms with further credibility that they are reputable and have a solid trading history as customers will know they have been thoroughly checked and approved by both Trading Standards and TrustMark to use this accreditation.
Simon Ayers, CEO of TrustMark, said: “With rising consumer expectations, homeowners are seeking higher levels of service and quality workmanship, resulting in tradespeople having to meet and deliver better standards of work and customer service for every job they do. The Trading Standards Approved scheme isn't just another 'badge' to add to a firm’s website, van and marketing materials, it's an investment offering great benefits - consumers like the added confidence when seeing businesses that have been ‘approved’ directly by Trading Standards and businesses want to provide a clear message that they can be trusted and relied on.”
Steve Ruddy, Head of Service Buckinghamshire & Surrey Trading Standards, added: "We are keen to help residents find reputable traders to work in their homes. We are proud to work with TrustMark to provide this reassurance to residents and to support local businesses. I think it’s a great example of how organisations can work in partnership to deliver more.”
To join the scheme, firms will need to be TrustMark registered and then they will be able to apply to TrustMark to complete the necessary checks in order to gain the approved accreditation. Trading Standards will carry out a background check, and subject to passing[MME1] [g2] [g3] these safeguards, the firm will then be accredited with trading standards approved status.
The cost of becoming Trading Standards Approved through TrustMark is £90 + VAT per year and is in addition to any Scheme Provider fee.
For further information about TrustMark and the services it offers, visit www.trustmark.org.uk