Pushing forward to gain yet more support for the Trustmark Scheme, NAPIT’s Chief Executive, John Andrews and Technical Director, Frank Bertie, attend the House of Commons by invitation to join the campaign for ‘Stopping Cowboy Builders in your Constituency’.

Five Lords, One Baroness and Forty Seven MP’s consisting of both conservative and labour parties were in attendance, providing a cross party political view on the subject.

With a further 48 organisational representatives from Competent Person Trade Associations including NAPIT and Consumer Organisations such as the Glass and Glazing Federation (GGF), the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) and Trading Standards in attendance the support was unprecedented.

Over the past year the single biggest group of complaints to OFT and Consumer Direct is that from members of the public suffering the results from using incompetent and more often unqualified tradesmen to carry out work on their homes. This issue alone cost homeowners in the region of £1.5 billion pounds last year, cementing the reasons for why schemes such as those run by NAPIT and Trustmark are invaluable.

During the afternoon Deep Sagar, Chair of Trustmark, opened up discussions to outline the warnings and risks to homeowners using cowboy builders and rogue tradesmen, then highlighted the benefits of the Trustmark Scheme which helps individuals find a reliable company to carry out work either inside or outside their home.

Trustmark, an award winning government backed scheme, allows consumers a route to find tradesmen who will work fairly and to a high standard.

Deep Sagar, Chair of Trustmark says: “Trustmark are very grateful to the Government, as well as to consumer protection organisations and the trade themselves, for their continued commitment and support. TrustMark’s priority is to protect all householders, and this can be done through informing them about the benefits of the scheme and how it enables them to have a simple and effective way of employing good quality tradesmen for work inside and outside their homes.”, he continues, “TrustMark is also about education and about introducing choice for homeowners. People can now choose: they can hire a good quality reputable tradesman who is TrustMark approved, or they can go for the cash-in-hand rogue with only a mobile phone number for contact and no references or accreditations.”

John Andrews, the Chief Executive of NAPIT, the UK’s fastest growing government approved register holder for trade professionals within the electrical, ventilation, plumbing and heating industries, had the following comments:
“It is essential that consumers have just one name to remember when searching for a reliable tradesperson and Trustmark, gives just such a name and an easily understood focal point”

“Organisations such as NAPIT underpin Trustmark, with their rigorous selection process and by upholding high technical standards for their respective industries.
But organisations such as ours can only go far in raising our profile in the publics eye, in fact if we promote ourselves too rigorously, then we can contribute to confusion for the public, because other similar organisations will also promote themselves more vigorously, leading to the public having yet more names to remember – far better to put our weight behind the Trustmark initiative in order to send out a single focused message.

Equally central government must play its part by finding sufficient ongoing funding to ensure that Trustmark can keep its profile high, to date this funding has been too small and for too short a period for effective long term PR”