Don’t let your windows be a “pane” in your side!

 The installation of most replacement windows, glazed doors and roof lights must conform to Building Regulations. Since April 2002, it is a requirement under Building Regulations that all installers of replacement windows and doors adhere to industry standards in order to comply with energy efficiency requirements.

It is now standard practice upon selling your property for your buyer’s solicitor to request evidence that any post-2002 installation is compliant with the necessary Regulations. There are currently two ways in which compliance can be proven. Firstly, via a certificate obtained from the Local Authority Building Control which states that the installation has been approved under Building Regulations. In this instance, it is the responsibility of the home owner, not the installer, to make the necessary application. Secondly, via a certificate which demonstrates that the work has been carried out by an installer who is registered with an appropriate ‘competent person scheme’, such as Certass or FENSA.

The Fenestration Self-Assessment Scheme, also known as FENSA, is the most commonly used certification. It helps to monitor installation and compliance in the industry as any contractor who is registered with the scheme has the responsibility of notifying them of an installation. The FENSA database is then updated and an evidentiary certificate is issued to the homeowner as proof that Regulations have been complied with. This certificate can then be presented to the buyer’s solicitor upon sale as testament to the adequacy of the work carried out.

If you no longer hold the original FENSA certificate, then it is possible to view your installation record and order a replacement certificate online at If you have had windows replaced since 2002 and do not have either evidence of Building Regulations approval or certification by Certass or FENSA, the buyer’s solicitor may ask you to provide an ‘Absence of FENSA Certificate’ indemnity insurance.

When arranging for replacement windows or glazed doors to be fitted, it is important to check that the tradesperson installing the windows is registered to provide a Certass or FENSA certificate. Alternatively, the necessary Building Regulations application must be made with the Local Authority.

Should you require further advice or guidance on selling your home or for more information of the documentation that will need to be provided, please contact the Thursfields property team on 0345 20 73 728 or

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