Ombudsman Services expands its home improvement sector

by Communications Team | Sep 17, 2015

Ombudsman Services has been appointed by the Double Glazing & Conservatory Ombudsman Scheme (DGCOS) and the Home Insulation & Energy Systems (HIES) contractors scheme to provide independent dispute resolution to their members from 1 October 2015. From 1 January 2015, Ombudsman Services will also provide redress for businesses listed on the Referenceline website, offering further protection for consumers in the home improvement sector.

DGCOS is a consumer protection organisation within the UK Double Glazing and Conservatory Industry; HIES, with a Code of Practice approved by the Chartered Trading Standards Institute, regulates installers operating in the eco, renewable and home insulation sectors; and Referenceline helps consumers make a more informed choice when choosing a business, working with Trading Standards and OFT-Approved Codes. 

All three schemes are committed to ensuring that consumers have peace of mind and Omudsman Services will work with them to handle any unresolved complaints. 

Commenting on the news, Chief Ombudsman Lewis Shand Smith said: “We’ve been working within the home improvement sector for some time, so we’ve developed strong expertise on disputes in this area. It’s fantastic that DGCOS, HIES and Referenceline have recognised this and we’re looking forward to working with them for many years.” 

Richard Christie, Chief Executive of DGCOS and HIES, said: “We are very pleased to have appointed Ombudsman Services to handle any unresolved complaints referred to them by our members’ customers. Ombudsman Services expertise and knowledge will be a valuable addition to ensuring our ethos of consumer protection is robust.”

Mark Dealtry, Managing Director of Referenceline, adds: “Referenceline gives consumers the opportunity to read and submit reviews about businesses. By appointing Ombudsman Services, we’re not only giving consumers a voice but a means of independently putting things right if they go wrong, and businesses can rely on Ombudsman Services to review complaints simply and fairly.”

If a consumer has a complaint about a member of DGCOS or HIES, of a business listed by Referenceline, they should first complain to that member or business. If the complaint remains unresolved after eight weeks, Ombudsman Services will be able to help.

The role of Ombudsman Services is to investigate complaints fairly by taking into account both sides of the story and making a recommendation on what action, if any, should be taken to resolve the complaint. Companies using the scheme agree to cooperate and abide by the ombudsman’s decision.

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Published 17 September 2015 


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About Ombudsman Services

  • Ombudsman Services is a not for profit, private company limited by guarantee.
  • Ombudsman Services runs national, private sector ombudsman schemes which provide independent dispute resolution for the communications, energy, property, copyright licensing sectors, the Green Deal, the ABFA, and Which? Trusted Traders scheme.
  • Ombudsman Services provides an expert dispute resolution service. The service focuses on encouraging early-agreed resolution wherever possible and does not charge a fee to consumers so it’s able to offer access to redress for consumers to resolve their complaints without proceeding to the civil courts.
  • Ombudsman Services is a full member of the Ombudsman Association (OA) and adheres to its principles.
  • Further information about Ombudsman Services can be found at