Compare quotes from builders across the UKtradespeople - but what trades associations are they members of and are they accredited?Trades Assocations & Trade Bodies of the UK

There are many professional trades associations for contractors across the UK, covering a plethora of services provided.  Bear in mind that many of these organisations simply require a member to pay for their annual membership so simply being a part of an association or carrying a 'badge' from these groups is no guarantee that you will receive higher levels of workmanship.  Some trades associations, however, have strict rules regarding levels of service required by members and have a complaints process in the event that members carry out a less than optimal service.  These organisations stipulate that their members meet codes of conduct and answer any customer complaints in a timely manner.

If you do find that you are unhappy with a tradesperson or company, one of the first places which you can take further action is via the route of 'reporting' the company's levels of service to trades associations that they may be members of.  The organisation may chase up the company and help with remediation if there are issues which a 'negotiator' might be able to intervene with.

Other organisations for trades may require their members to complete minimum levels of qualification before they can gain a status or claim to be part of the group / claim affiliation with the group.  If in doubt, you should contact the group themselves to see what their joining criteria is and whether they carry out any reference checking or require qualifications from members when joining.

Categories of Trades Associations And Accreditations

All Trades

  • Trading Standards
  • British Standards Institution
  • Fair Trades Association
  • Trustmark
  • Which Trades

Trading Standards

In the United Kingdom, Trading Standards are the local authority departments, formerly known as Weights and Measures, that enforce consumer protection legislation.

British Standards Institution

British Standards Institution is a non-profit distributing organisation and offers global services in the linked fields of standardisation, systems assessment, product certification, training and advisory services.

Fair Trades Association

Fair Trades is a trades association with a rigorous vetting an checking process, including legal and financial checks, address checks, a member charter signed, checks of a trading history and ongoing vetting and verification.  Fair Trades was established in 1983.

Trustmark

TrustMark membership allows access to the only Government-endorsed 'find a tradesperson' scheme for a wide range of trades in and around the home.

Which Trades

Established by the well known and trusted consumer advice guide 'Which?', Which? The Which? Which? claim that their Trusted Trader logo is a sign of reputation and trust; helping you choose the right trader and recognising good traders.

Aerials (Installers and Satellite Contractors) Associations

  • Confederation of Aerial Industries (Aerial Installers Trade Association) (CAI) Association works with aerial fitters and satellite industry contractors in the UK.  Often referred to as the CAI.
  • Irish Satellite and Aerial Association (ISAA).  Covering Southern Ireland counties including Dublin.  Members include satellite dish installers and repairers and aerial installers

Confederation of Aerial Industries (CAI)

The Confederation of Aerial Industries is the trade association supporting aerial and satellite installers across the UK.

Irish Satellite and Aerial Association (ISAA)

Formed by professional installers, the core tenet of the Irish Satellite and Aerial Association (ISAA) is to adhere to high standards of workmanship and professional conduct.

Alarms and Home Security Associations

  • Electronic Security Association (ESA)
  • National Association of Security Installation Contractors (NASIC)

Electronic Security Association (ESA)

ESA provides training, advocacy, savings and services to its member companies, which employ more than 500000 electronic security professionals

National Association of Security Installation Contractors (NASIC)

NASIC provides an association of independent companies that you can trust to design, install and maintain systems to the highest industry standards.

Architectural Services Associations

  • The Architectural Association School of Architecture (AASA)
  • The Royal Institute of The Architects Of Ireland (RIAI)
  • Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)
  • Royal Incorporation of Architects In Scotland (RIAS)
  • Royal Society of Architects In Wales (RSAW)
  • Royal Society of Ulster Architects (RSUA)
  • North Wales Society of Architects (NWSA)
  • Architects Registration Board (ARB)

Asbestos Removal, Disposal and Testing Associations

  • Asbestos Removal Contractors Association (ARCA)
  • Asbestos Industry Association (AIA)
  • Asbestos Testing and Consultancy Association (ATCA)
  • UK Asbestos Training Association (UKATA)

Bathrooms and Bathroom Installers Associations

  • The Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom and Bathroom Installers
  • Kitchen Bathroom And Bedroom Specialists Association

Bedroom Fitters And Suppliers Associations

  • Kitchen Bathroom And Bedroom Specialists Association
  • The British Woodworking Association

Builders, Building Contractors and Companies Associations

  • Federation of Master Builders
  • Guild Of Builders and Contractors
  • National Federation of Builders
  • Chartered Institute of Building
  • Construction Licensing Executive (Scotland Only)
  • Federation of Master Builders (Scotland)
  • Federation of Master Builders (Northern Ireland)
  • National House Building Council
  • National House Building Council (Scotland)

Stonemasonry and Bricklaying Contractors and Companies Associations

  • European Association Of Stonemasons And Sculptors
  • Guild of Builders and Contractors

Carpentry and Joinery and Cabinet Making Associations

  • Guild of Master Craftsmen
  • The British Woodworking Association

Domestic and Commercial Cleaning Associations

  • International Cleaning and Restoration Association (ICRA)
  • ISSA - Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association

Painting and Decorating and Interior Design Associations

Fencing Suppliers and Erectors and Commercial Fencing Contractors Associations

Gardening, Landscaping And Garden Design Companies Associations

  • Arborcultural Association

Heating, Plumbing and Ventilation Associations

Insulation and Damp Proofing Associations

Kitchen Fitters And Suppliers Associations

  • Kitchen Bathroom And Bedroom Specialists Association
  • Guild of Master Craftsmen
  • The British Woodworking Association

Tiling And Wet Walling Contractors Associations

Plastering And Rendering Associations

Solar, Bio-Degradable And Renewable Energy Associations

Roofing Contractors Associations

roofingCompare quotes from roofers and roofing contractors for roof work and and fascias soffits and guttersAny advice which you’ll read about how to find a competent and reputable roofer will tell you to speak to your friends and family or seek out someone who is registered with one of the major roofing trades associations.

The idea behind the various trade associations is that their members are regulated, and have to prove that they can work to a certain standard.

There are a few different roofing trades associations, and roofing companies may be a member of just one, or several.

 

 

National Federation of Roofing Contractors

Roof Worker sunlightThe NFRC is the UK’s largest trade association for the roofing industry, and has been going for almost 120 years.

The organisation claims to represent 70% of the roofing industry by value, but this implies that although most of the larger companies who do large jobs are members, many of the smaller ones may not be.

 

Members of the NFRC have to prove that they can work to a certain standard, and have to provide a written estimate and quote before starting work.

Many NFRC members also offer guarantees on their work, and finding an NFRC member in your area is simple as there is a comprehensive search function on their website.

 

Confederation of Roofing Contractors

two roofers working on a houseThe CRC is a newcomer to the trade association scene, and has only been in existence since 1985.

Their flagship scheme is the “competent roofer” accreditation, which reassures customers that the work on their roof will be carried out to current building standards.

The fees for joining the association are quite high, so only roofers who are serious about good practice will take the step of signing up.

It is very easy to search on a county level for a roofer near you, and each member has their own page showing contact details and the services they offer.

 

 

 

Single Ply Roofing Association

Roofer workingSingle ply roofs come in various types, and cover most flat roofs and modern sloping roofs covered in membrane rather than tiles or slates.

As this is a more specialist field, using a contractor who is a member of this association rather than a general roofer should guarantee someone who has a track record in this method of construction.

They have many of the same criteria for joining as the other associations, but have far fewer members so the downside is that it may be difficult to find an accredited member locally.

 

 

 

 

National Society of Master Thatchers

Thatching a building is a dying art, but if you live in a home with a thatched roof, finding someone who knows what they are doing is critical.

The National Society of Master Thatchers helps homeowners find a skilled craftsman in their area and is aware of all the issues surrounding thatching in listed buildings and using local materials and techniques.

Word of mouth is of especial importance in the thatching world, and although the trade association may be a good starting point.

Recommendations from people locally who have had their roofs rethatched recently may be a better source.

Tree Surgery & Arborcultural Associations

Arborcultural Association

One of the biggest UK organisations and trade bodies for anyone working with trees is the Arboricultural Association, and they have plenty to offer the homeowner too.

The Association was founded in the 1960s primarily as a body to encourage the scientific study of everything tree-related, but over the past 50 years the remit of the Association has broadened enormously.  Anyone can apply to join, with most of the members being qualified tree surgeons, planning officers or students of horticulture and related subjects.

One of the main reasons why non-industry people head to the website of the Arboricultural Association is to find a tree surgeon.  These are qualified professionals who are experienced in both keeping trees healthy, and removing trees which have become hazardous.  This can be dangerous work and not something that many homeowners want to do by themselves.

The “find a specialist” section on the Arboricultural Association website provides all of the information you need about choosing a tree surgeon, what a tree surgeon can do and provides a list of approved contractors in your local area.  Use the Arboricultural Association’s website as a starting point when you are looking for someone to do work in your garden, but it is not a substitute for seeing contractors face to face and asking at least three to provide written quotes for doing any planned work to help you make an effective comparison.

As well as helping you find the professional help you need for the jobs you can’t tackle by yourself, the Arboricultural Association website is a wealth of information about a wide range of different issues which could affect not only trees, but many aspects of your home.

Worried what the best way is to remove ivy from walls or deal with bat roosting in your garage?

Or perhaps you’re confused about which trees might have legal protection or whether you’re allowed to cut the neighbour’s hedge?

All of those topics and more are addressed on the website, in clear and simple language which is not pitched at experts in the world of trees.  Both members of the Arboricultural Association and non-members can take advantage of the training courses which are offered by the Association throughout the year.

It’s fair to say that some of the courses, such as the three day Professional Tree Inspection certificate are definitely pitched at surveyors and people working in the construction and planning industries, but the shorter introductory courses are suitable for anyone planning renovation or building work at home and worried about how the presence of trees might affect the project.

The Association also has a wide range of books for sale through the website to complement the courses on offer and reinforce learning.