Qualified Decking Installer
Good Morning Karl
I think that a suitably limited ‘qualification’, for basic deck design & construction would be very welcome, and I for one, despite 38 years in the industry, am always keen to learn, and would like to be involved/take part.
Part of my work these days involves me in adjudication and the preparation of expert witness reports, where things have gone horribly wrong on a contract, and, some of the decking horror stories that I have had to look at beggars belief!!
If I get involved with a project, for say a restaurant or hotel, then I always run my design past a ‘tame’ structural engineer, to ensure public loading criteria etc are met; having an insight into the maths involved, I think it unlikely that this is an area you would want to allow designers to think they can cover/cope with?
Perhaps some sort of recognised qualification may enable insurance companies to consider offering reasonable rates for those ‘qualified’ decking designers to take out Professional Indemnity Insurance to cover their design work. It genuinely worries me the number of designers/installers operating without cover, and the most often reason cited is cost. I have heard from freshly qualified garden designers being asked to pay up to £3k/year !!- even myself, with 38 years ‘no claim bonus’ has to fork out the thick end of £600 ??!! – so, any perceived help in this quarter, I’m sure would be welcomed by the industry.
I’m confident that the vast majority of the ‘Decking Network’ subscribers will want to be involved, because they are the guys who care about getting it right, unfortunately, as with all trades, it’s the tiny minority who do the ‘bodge it and scarper’ jobs that wont care, but will get the trade a bad name.
Educating the public/specifiers to use ‘qualified’ designers and installers will, I think, be the ultimate challenge.
Good luck, and please let me know if you think I can be of any help.