Qualibat recently provided an update on trends in the number of building firms qualified to use the RGE (recognized as an environmental guarantor) label. In 2022, the organization recorded a slight drop in the number of craftsmen and companies involved in the process. This finding is directly linked to the difficulties faced by companies in the building and civil engineering sector in recent months.
An obstacle for individuals and businesses
A number of schemes, such as energy saving certificates (CEE), zero-rate eco-loans (Eco-PTZ), energy renovation tax credits for small and medium-sized businesses (TPE-PME) and MaPrimeRenov', are conditional on the professionals carrying out the work being awarded the RGE label. Calling on a certified contractor is a guarantee of quality for customers.
Companies wishing to obtain the RGE label must meet a number of conditions, including compliance with legal and administrative obligations. They are required to appoint at least one RGE-trained technical manager, and to submit an application to the organization issuing the desired quality mark. You can consult the list of qualifications and certifications available on the France Renov' public housing renovation service website, in the "Espace Pro du Bâtiment " section. The site also provides a directory enabling you to identify RGE professionals by geographical area, work category or validity date.
Today, the number of RGE-qualified professionals is falling. At least, that's what ADEME and Qualibat have found. According to ADEME, the number of RGE companies was 63,000 on December 31, 2022, compared with 65,013 the previous year. Qualibat, the building industry's leading qualification and certification body, confirms this trend, recording a year-on-year decrease of 3,000. Even if the drop is not significant at this stage, it represents a brake for individuals and companies wishing to take advantage of government subsidies.
Towards a simplified system?
" We have 560,000 craft construction companies and only 63,000 RGE companies. We can't be satisfied with that. We need more of them," Jean-Christophe Repon, President of the Confédération des artisans du bâtiment (CAPEB), told Les Echos newspaper.
Professionals are calling for a simplification of the system for obtaining the RGE label.
"There is a real need to simplify the #work aid schemes both to relieve the burden on building professionals and to encourage private individuals to undertake #energy renovation work" @DavidMoralesEnt @EnerJmeeting pic.twitter.com/J9gcsM0VRR- The CAPEB (@capeb_fr) February 9, 2023
" We worked on a report with the Interministerial Directorate for Public Transformation, which was then submitted to Emmanuelle Wargon, then Minister Delegate for Housing," recalls Jean-Christophe Repon.
One possible solution could be to extend the RGE chantier scheme, which is being tested until December 31, 2023 as part of the France Relance plan. The RGE chantier par chantier scheme enables craftsmen and SMEs to carry out energy-efficiency renovation work without holding the RGE label, while enabling their customers to benefit from public subsidies. Last September, the CAPEB counted nearly 600 worksite qualification files.