Energy is an essential service; it is important that customers can be guaranteed a minimum level of service and protection. In 2019, government confirmed that it will introduce new statutory regulation for the entire heat network market. While regulation is being developed, government has strongly encouraged the market to take early action to prepare for regulation, highlighting the work of Heat Trust.

Heat Trust is uniquely positioned to support all heat network suppliers as they support the transition to a low carbon energy system. Our work supports heat suppliers to ensure they are well positioned as new regulations are developed. Heat Trust's standards can apply to any heat energy suppliers who contract with domestic and micro-business properties, metered or unmetered, where the heat customer pays their supplier directly for their heat energy. To find out more about how Heat Trust can support heat suppliers and about joining Heat Trust, please click here

The customer service and customer protection standards set by Heat Trust are comparable to the quality and performance standards for regulated utilities (such as gas and electricity) and draw on existing regulations and industry best practice. When a heat suppliers registers their heat network(s) with Heat Trust, they agree to abide by the Scheme Rules and Bye-Laws.

We also work with our members to help promote best practice, through regular forums, relevant guidance, and highlighting any trends we see in the monitoring data they return.

When a heat network is successfully registered with Heat Trust, the customers on the heat network will benefit from the standards set, which are independently verified through regular audits, as well as access to an independent complaint handling service through the Energy Ombudsman. See all sites registered with the Heat Trust Scheme. 

Heat Trust includes rules on the following:
  • Support for heat customers in vulnerable circumstances
  • Heat supplier obligations
  • Heat customer service and reporting a fault or emergency
  • Process for customers joining and leaving
  • Heat meters
  • Heat Interface Units (HIUs)
  • Heat bill and heat charge calculations
  • Heat bill payment arrangements and the management of arrears and/or debt
  • Suspension and resumptions of service processes
  • Complaint handling and independent complaint handling
  • Privacy policy and data protection

There are three key areas for which Heat Trust does not have the legal authority to comment or prescribe standards. Heat Trust cannot:

  • Provide comment or arbitration on pricing
  • Provide guidance on contract length
  • Provide a supplier of last resort

These three issues are being addressed in the Association For Decentralised Energy's Heat Network Task Force Report  and the Competition and Markets Authority's Heat Networks market study.