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Consumer Rights Act 2015 comes into force October 1st

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New legislation will come into effect this Thursday under The Consumer Rights Act 2015. The new rules are set to replace eight current pieces of legislation, including The Sale of Goods Act (1979), The Supply of Goods and Services Act (1982) and the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations (1999). Older consumer laws don’t take into account a lot of recent development, such online/mobile shopping.

Consumer law is changing on 1 October 2015, as the Consumer Rights Act comes into force.  The Act is part of the government’s reform of UK consumer law and is predicted to boost the economy by £4 billion over the next decade by streamlining complicated law from eight pieces of legislation into one place.

It will also introduce a range of new rights for consumers when it comes into force on 1 October 2015 including a 30-day time period to return faulty goods and replacement rights for faulty digital content.

In March, the then Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “This is the biggest shake up of consumer law for a generation, bringing legislation in line with the fact many people now buy online. Consumers will now be much better informed and protected when buying goods or services on the internet. They will now be entitled to get for the first time a free repair or replacement for any faulty digital content.”

The changes will cover:
– what should happen when goods are faulty
– unfair terms in a contract
– what happens when a business is acting in a way which isn’t competitive
– written notice for routine inspections to be given by public enforcers, such as Trading Standards
– greater flexibility for public enforcers to respond to breaches of consumer law, such as seeking redress for consumers who have suffered harm

As well as these changes there are two new areas of law covering:

1) what should happen when digital content (eg online films, games, e-books) is faulty – the act now gives consumers a clear right to repair or replacement

2) how services should match up to what has been agreed, and what should happen when they do not or when they are not provided with reasonable care and skill (eg giving some money back if it is not practical to bring the service into line with what was agreed)

Hannah Maundrell, Editor in Chief of money.co.uk comments on the introduction of the new Consumer Rights Act 2015 on the 1st October: “It’s fantastic that we’re finally able to benefit from the biggest overhaul of consumer law in several decades brought in by the new rights, but it doesn’t mean a thing if consumers don’t know about them.

“It’s a complex rulebook, but the key point is that any ‘wriggle room’ retailers previously had when it came to refunds has been well and truly stamped out. Now, if you buy a product – whether physical or digital – and discover a fault within 30 days you’ll be entitled to a full refund. The party really is over for retailers that try to argue the point.

“Whilst these changes are wonderful the most important point is that consumers fully understand their rights before they attempt to get a refund. Assuming retailers are fully trained and up to speed with the correct legalities around issuing refunds could be a big mistake – knowledge really is power when it comes to getting your money back. Being fobbed off isn’t an option anymore, shoppers must stand tall and fight for their rights.”

You can read more following these links

– The Act itself

– Government Policy Paper

– Citizens Advice Bureau

– Which?

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Economy

A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon

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energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.

1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.

3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

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Economy

IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”

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IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.

Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.

We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

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