A solar company in Northern Ireland has been fined £2,000 for misleading customers.
The case was brought by the Trading Standards Service (TSS) against BlueBuild Energy, which was found guilty at Newtownards Magistrates’ Court this week for mis-selling a solar system to a couple.
The charge was related to a sales visit to the couple’s home about financing the purchase of a solar system through a loan – costing £152 per month for 10 years.
They were told they would only have to pay the first three months of instalments following which the system would pay for itself. However the first income generated by the system wasn’t received until around 10 months after the installation and was insufficient to cover the monthly payments, according to TSS.
Kevin McNamara from TSS added: “Solar PV systems are expensive items. In this case the consumers will have paid out over £18,000 after 10 years. There is a lot of detailed information for consumers to take on board before coming to a decision so it is important that they are not misled in respect of the information they are given.”
BlueBuild Energy said it was never the intention of the company to mislead the customer and it no longer uses the products.
Managing Director Ewan Melvin added: “We deeply regret this case and are sorry, particularly as we have worked happily with 4,000 customers since the incident. We have always successfully dealt with any complaints which in all these years have amounted to fewer than 1%.”