The Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Trade Register.
Consumers often find it difficult to find trustworthy traders. People worry that they may get ripped off by a rogue contractor. That is where the Trade Register can help.
The Home Improvement Trade Register is a list of traders that fulfill certain criteria. The scheme is run by several County Councils and includes trades like carpenters and joiners, as well as builders, electricians and plumbers. The aim of the Trade Register is to reassure, support and provide consumers with advice on employing a trader.
To become a member of the Trade Register, a business needs to commit to doing a ‘fair job’ at a ‘fair price’. This includes accurately describing and pricing goods and services. It means recognising the rights of customers and delivering good customer service. All trades people must also have liability insurance of no less than £2 million pounds.
One of the main benefits of using the Trade Register is that it provides consumers with an external complaints procedure. If you have failed to resolve a problem with a trader, you can take the issue to Consumer Direct. They can provide advice and pass on consumer complaints to Trading Standards for mediation.
We originally joined the Trade Register in 2011 because the values are totally in keeping with our business ethos. We are committed to fair and honest practice. We have full liability insurance, and publish the Trade Register’s complaints procedure on our website and give it to all our customers.
However, as of 31st January 2014, the Shropshire Trade Register has started charging businesses for membership. This is a disappointing move. Firstly, it is less likely that rogue traders will sign up if they have to pay. Secondly, it puts further financial pressure on small businesses, which already have large overheads. The register promised greater benefits for members when they consulted businesses about charging. However, they do not seem to have delivered on this commitment. With great reluctance we therefore let our membership lapse in 2016.