Blog: Sub-contracting under the Green Homes Grant scheme

Written by Ben Howe, Compliance and Enforcement Manager

On Wednesday 30th September 2020 we saw the launch of the government’s Green Homes Grant scheme. It gives homeowners across England the opportunity to apply for funding to make energy-efficiency improvements to their homes.

These improvements include a range of MCS certified low carbon heating measures. The voucher of up to £5,000 will cover at least two thirds of the cost; with those on qualifying benefits getting a voucher for up to £10,000 towards the cost of these home improvements.

With an expected increase in enquiries for MCS Contractors, we know that several of you will be considering sub-contracting some of this work out. You need to make sure that you fully understand how you can sub-contract and remain compliant with MCS Standards.

How to compliantly sub-contract

If you are awarded work – you are allowed to sub-contract all, or part of the installation out to another Installer who isn’t MCS certified BUT you must adhere to all of the requirements of clause 4.11, MCS001-1:

  • There shall be a formal written sub-contract agreement clearly setting out the scope of work to be undertaken by the sub-contractor and the standards expected.
  • The MCS Contractor ensures the sub-contractor has the necessary capacity and competency for their scope of work.
  • The sub-contractor possesses the appropriate insurances for their scope of work.
  • Ensure all personnel involved have received relevant training (including relevant product specific training), can demonstrate competence for their scope of work and records are maintained in accordance with clause 4.17.
  • Supervise and assess the work undertaken to ensure the requirements of the MCS Installation Standard for the technology installed are met. The number of installations assessed should not be less than the square root of the total number of installations rounded up to the nearest whole number.
  • The MCS Contractor assumes full responsibility for the installation and registers the installation on the MCS Installation Database (MID)

Clause 4.15, MCS001-1 requires Contractors to maintain records of:

  • Sub-contract arrangements as defined in MCS 025
  • Records identifying the individuals involved with the installation as defined in MCS 025

Contractors are reminded that these requirements apply to contracted sales personnel too.

This warning to make sure that MCS certified Contractors sub-contract appropriately comes as we heighten even further our monitoring, compliance and enforcement activities to ensure that MCS certified work carried out under the Green Homes Grant complies with the Standards and that quality is assured.

Any Contractors found to be in breach of the requirements and where instances of non-compliant sub-contracting arrangements are identified, MCS Contractors will have their access to the MID immediately blocked and also risk having their MCS Licence Agreement suspended or removed. Without an active MCS Licence Agreement, contractors will no longer be MCS certified and be unable to install additional systems under the Green Homes Grant scheme.

For more information about staying compliant with sub-contracting arrangements, please refer to MCS 001-1 in our Standards and Tools Library.