Which Chimney Sweeps association to choose?
These are my views and some other sweeps may not agree, I’m not blogging this to discredit anyone.
Here is why, from the moment I approached them they were extremely friendly and answered all my questions. There were no hidden fees and it was a 1 on 1 training course. Right from the beginning I could tell that they weren’t in it just for the money.
I don’t do well in large classrooms full of other people, I wanted to learn this trade and I wanted to do it 1 on 1.
Many other associations charge over £1500 for a chimney sweep course and you could be in a class with up 15 other students, stood around watching each other sweep different chimneys and flues.
The Chimney Sweep Academy was less than half that.
Many other associations charge lots of extra’s like assessment fees £400 and other unnecessary costs.
As a business starting out, I wanted to keep my overheads as low as I could, that way I could pass on my savings to my customers, keeping my prices competitive.
So, the price of these different associations really does matter.
There are so many to choose from and the rivalry between them all is, well let’s not go in to it today!
NACS (national association of chimney sweeps – £1819, 5-year refresher £60, re-assessment on site, £474, smoke test course £270, cctv inspection course £200, thatch course £200. That’s nearly £3000 before you’ve brought the tools that you need! Oh and then its either £150 a year to stay a member or £300 a year!
APICS (association of professional independent chimney sweeps) – No visible prices on their website you need to email them.
GOMC (guild of master chimney sweeps) Guild training course £1320, final assessment £400, yearly membership £284
ICS (Institute of chimney sweeps) – No visible prices on their website, you will need to contact them. Yearly membership £210
CHIMNEY SWEEP ACADEMY – £649 and their yearly membership is just £99.
The Choice is yours!
They all claim to be the best and offer the best training, but bottom line is….. (you are going to love this)
“A chimney sweep DOESN’T have to be a member of any”
That’s right, so why pay £3000 for the training and assessment fees to a company when you don’t need to?
Here are the reasons I joined one of the above organisations, it looks professional, they offer the training I needed and the support I need, if I ever turn up to a job and I’m unsure of something they are there to answer questions. If I do end up in a legal battle, they will offer the legal support I need.
You don’t get that when you out there on your own, now I’m sure all the associations offer this kind of support but why are they charging so much for the training? I will tell you why “Profit” yes, we are all in the world to make money but charging someone £2000 when there is another company that will do it for less than half that price is ludicrous.
The Chimney sweep academy are the new kids on the block but I can promise you that all its members are happy.
Final thoughts, these are my own views and nobody else’s, but go back 100 years ago when everyone had open fires, were there these training associations, no it was a trade that you learnt and became good at.
Don’t forget if you have any questions please do contact me
The Sweep Guy