Suppliers and Products
Selecting the right products, suppliers and installers is vital to ensuring that any building work or installations are safe, fit for purpose, reliable and maximises the energy efficiency of your building. Energy efficiency upgrades to your care home may require using several different suppliers; it’s important to make sure that the building products and professionals you contract are right for the job.
BRE is a completely independent organisation and do not recommend any specific suppliers, installers, products or trades people. However, to help you with the process of selecting products and building professionals, we have pulled together a list of accreditations and registrations to look out for.
TrustMark is the Government endorsed quality scheme. TrustMark registered businesses have been thoroughly vetted to meet required standards and have made a considerable commitment to good customer service, technical competence and trading practices.
Trustmark ensure all Registered Businesses adhere to and maintain these standards through a network of Scheme Providers. Additionally, if a problem does arise, TrustMark offers a range of remedies to give further protection to consumers.
Find a trusted tradesman on the TrustMark website.
The British Board of Agrément (BBA)
As well as certifying products, BBA also certify installers and have a list of the installers they certify which is updated every month. One place to look when selecting an installer is on the BBA site to see if they are a BBA certified installer.
Competent person register
Competent Person Schemes (CPS) were introduced by the UK Government to allow individuals and enterprises to self-certify that their work complies with the Building Regulations as an alternative to submitting a building notice or using an approved inspector.
A Competent Person must be registered with a scheme that has been approved by MHCLG (Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government). Schemes authorised by the MHCLG are listed on its website and you can search for a tradesperson by location and trade on the competent person register site.
MCS (Microgeneration Certification Scheme)
MCS are an organisation who maintain standards that allow for the certification of products, installers and their installations. Their certification scheme is run by ISO 17065 UKAS accredited Certification Bodies on behalf of MCS. The standards maintained by MCS fall into two main categories of Installer Standards and Product Standards.
Installer Standards covers the installation of products such as Heat Pumps, Micro CHP, Solar PV, Solar Thermal alongside General Scheme Requirements.
Product Standards covers a similar range of products, with the focus of these standards on certifying the actual product, rather than the installation process.
A link to their Standards and Tools Library can be found here.
MCS certified Contractors have access to Insurance Backed Guarantees through IWA. These Insurance Backed Guarantees extend to these renewable technology installations. For more information about insurance Backed warranties and guaranties click here.
The Carbon Trust – Green Business Directory
The Carbon Trust – Green Business Directory is a resource for organisations looking to make investments in energy efficiency improving equipment and low carbon technologies. The site is accessed via the Carbon Trust website and contains a list of Carbon Trust Accredited Suppliers and installers of energy efficiency and renewable energy technology.
All Carbon Trust Accredited Suppliers have been independently assessed by the Carbon Trust and have a proven track record of delivering well designed energy efficient and renewable energy system.
Energy assessors (commercial)
If you are looking to find a qualified Commercial Energy Assessor, you can find one by going to this Government website which enables you to find an assessor by postcode.
To find an electrical engineer that is a member of the electrical safety register go to the electrical competent persons register; or if you looking for a commercial electrician go to the electrical safety register.
These websites list all electrical contractors that can undertake commercial work and are certified by NICEIC or ECA. You can also visit NICEIC to find or check a contractor on their register or visit ECA to find or check a contractor.
To find or check a gas engineer that is legally allowed to carry out gas works go to the official list of gas engineers who must be registered by law at the Gas Safe Register.
Federation of Master Builders
The Federation of Master Builders is a trade association established in 1941 representing the interests of small to medium-sized building companies. It provides members with expert advice and training. Members are required to pass a strict vetting and independent inspection process before joining. Click here to search for registered builders in your area.
National Federation of Builders
The National Federation of Builders is one of the UK’s longest standing trade associations to represents builders, contractors and house builders across England and Wales. Its members range from sole traders to large multi-million-pound construction companies. They provide expert advice and training to their members to ensure they can comply with industry standards. Click here to search for registered builders in your area.
When selecting a builder, you should always check references, do all due diligence and look at reviews even for builders who are registered with these trade associations. Some bogus builders have claimed to be members of these and other trade groups, but who are in fact not, so it’s worth going to the federations’ own websites to check.
Professional architect trade bodies
There are two main professional bodies for architects in the UK; the Architects Registration Board (ARB) and the Royal Institute of British Architects. When selecting an architect, you should make sure they are registered with these bodies. Both organisations have the function for you to search their websites so you can check that you are dealing with a genuine and qualified professional and find right architect for your project.
Architects Registration Board (ARB)
The Architects Registration Board is the body set up by Parliament as the independent UK regulator of architects. They keep the official UK Register of Architects, and only people in the Register are legally entitled to use the name “architect” in business or practice. You can search for architects and check that you are dealing with a genuine and qualified professional. Visit the Architects Registration Board website.
Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)
The Royal institute of British Architects is a global professional membership body. All members are accredited Architects practices. Click here to get matched with the right architect for your project.
Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors is a globally recognised professional members body for both associate and chartered surveyors. There are many different types of surveyors that specialise in different aspects of building surveying which are explained and listed on their website.
The Energy Saving Trust (EST)
EST is an independent organisation working to address the climate emergency. They have over 25 years’ experience measuring the effectiveness and performance of energy efficient technologies.
The EST verify the performance of products and produce a database of endorsed and verified products. When selecting a product for your care home, check to see if the product is on the EST register.
The British Board of Agrément (BBA)
BBA test, approve, and certify a wide range of energy efficiency products. A BBA certification or testing is a mark of quality and demonstrates compliance with industry regulations or offers assurances where no industry standards are present.
To check if the product you have been recommended, or you have identified, has been certified by the BBA, search for certificates on the BBA website.
The Energy Technology List (ETL)
The ETL is a government list of energy efficient plants and machinery which is typically set at the top 25% of products on the market. It features products such as boilers, lighting and air conditioning. It provides information on 14,000 energy efficient products to save your business energy and money. Visit the ETL website.