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Highland Council warns members of the public of risks home energy improvements scams


By Alan Shields

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Members of the public should be on their guard if they are approached by people wishing to install home energy products.
Members of the public should be on their guard if they are approached by people wishing to install home energy products.

Householders are being warned to be on the lookout for possible rogue traders offering home energy improvements.

Highland Council said members of the public should be on their guard if they are approached by people wishing to install home energy products.

The warning follows recent reports that there may be traders operating in the area, offering free insulation works, under government-funded schemes, to properties without the formal approval required to do the works.

Mark McGinty, trading standards team leader at Highland Council, said: “This is a difficult situation for householders as there has been a long line of home energy schemes available to householders to have products such as roof or wall insulation, boilers or solar systems installed for free, some even offering future payments to the recipient.

“Unfortunately, having numerous schemes has also led to numerous complaints regarding rogue traders who have appeared on the doorstep willing to take advantage of the complex marketplace.

“This in turn leads to complaints from those feeling misled on their doorstep when they realise what they have got is not necessarily what they thought they were getting.”

Highland Council has teamed up with the Energy Efficiency Scotland: Area Based Scheme (EES:ABS) programme in a bid to tackle the problem.

Stuart Miller, EES:ABS project manager, said: “The council currently has only one energy provider.

“The council is working with E.ON, to provide first time central heating, external wall insulation, cavity and wall insulation and solar PV and battery measures to eligible households.

“Any installer operating within this scheme will be readily identifiable.

“If you are approached by an installer who claims to be working with Highland Council, please confirm the validity of their offering by contacting Home Energy Scotland.

“The council scheme operators adopt the no cold calling policy and initial communication will be by letter, not a knock on the door.”


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