Certass or FENSA: Which is Better for Your Home Improvement Work?

Both Certass and FENSA are accreditation bodies within the Competent Persons Scheme, offering homeowners peace of mind and the reassurance needed that work on windows, doors, and roof lighting on their properties is compliant with Building Regulations. Together, they make up two thirds of the double glazing industry in the UK. But there is also a question over which certification is better to have for your home: Certass or FENSA?Below, we have set out some information on these certification bodies, the difference between the two, and what their individual certificates could mean for your property. Read on to learn more, or contact us right away if you would like to begin discussions for your own window or door installations as soon as possible.

Competent Person Schemes

As a first step, you may also wish to know more about the notion of Competent Person Schemes. These are regulatory bodies that support different trades and types of work within building, ensuring that these meet Building Regulations in their given areas. FENSA and Certass both offer certification in relation to double glazing, and therefore cover window and door replacements. 

Companies and contractors are invited to register with these bodies, but must first have demonstrated that they offer high quality work and superior customer service. Sash Windows London Ltd. is one such company, having been registered with FENSA for almost two decades and continually demonstrating our commitment to our customers and to the work we will carry out for them.

What is FENSA?

FENSA stands for the Fenestration Self-Assessment Scheme. It was established in 2002 by the Glass and Glazing Federation (GGF) and other industry bodies, following encouragement from the UK Government, in response to Building Regulations for double glazing companies in England and Wales. It monitors Building Regulation compliance for replacement windows, doors, and roof lighting. 

Installers with FENSA approval, whether they are large national brands or small, local companies, are regularly assessed to ensure standards are maintained. This means making sure Building Regulations are complied with, energy efficient materials are used in each installation, and the work is registered with the area’s local authority when finished.

When a FENSA-registered installer completes a project for a homeowner, they will provide them with a certificate to act as evidence that the work complies with Building Regulations. If you would like to learn more about FENSA certificates, please see our page of advice and information.

What is Certass?

Certass is a UKAS-approved certification body similar to FENSA, for the operation of a Competent Person Scheme under a Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) license and a Green Deal Certification Body under licence from the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC). In essence, they are a limited company that is approved to certify tradespeople as part of a Government scheme. Unlike FENSA, the name itself does not stand for anything.

The Certass Trade Association also offers additional support, advice, and information to installers, manufacturers, and other companies in the supply chain to help them manage their business more effectively. 

As with work carried out by a FENSA member, a Certass-registered contractor or installer will be required to provide homeowners with a certificate that guarantees compliance with Building Regulations. They will also have to notify the body that the work has been completed, as well as the local council in that specific area.

Should You Choose FENSA or Certass Certification?

While there are no distinct differences between FENSA and Certass certificates, as both provide reassurance that a professional is working on your property, there are some key differences to consider between the certification schemes themselves. These may even affect your decision making when looking for a specialist to install window or door replacements for your property.

The key difference most will note between FENSA and Certass is that FENSA is older, having been established four years before Certass (2002, compared to 2006). It is also more well-known and has a much larger membership, thereby suggesting its popularity amongst professional contractors and installers. However, Certass is widely considered the next most popular choice to FENSA, and has grown in terms of membership in more recent years. 

Certass membership growth has been linked in some cases to the fact that their membership is cheaper than FENSA’s, though both bodies offer certification with the same validity and operate to the same standards. Being accredited by TrustMark and being Green Deal approved has also made Certass a popular choice with homeland property owners, and may be the only case in which one certification body is objectively a better choice than the other for a property owner.

Both FENSA and Certass also have exacting standards in place for training and competence that their members must meet in order to keep operating as a registered member. If anything should go wrong with the work provided by a registered contractor or installer, both organisations would also have to step in and provide mediation for disputes.

For Specialist FENSA-Approved Installations

If your home requires a new set of beautiful, bespoke windows in a sash, casement, or other heritage style, or even if you are considering stylish composite, sliding, or French doors for your property’s front or back, Sash Windows London Ltd. will be fully prepared to provide what you need. 

As a FENSA-registered company, our team has consistently proven that we offer the high quality products and services our customers are looking for. We will also be glad to provide the same for you when you get in touch with us on the phone or send us an email to start discussing what you would like from our service. 

As part of this discussion, we will take the time to go through prices with you, so you can decide which window or door type is best for your household budget, as well as your personal tastes. Contact us and ensure that any purchase made is fitted by a team of fully certified professionals today.