The home improvement industry had explosive growth during the Coronavirus pandemic due primarily to DIY projects. It’s been predicted that, in 2021, the total building products market will have grown by 13.0%. In 2022, growth is forecasted at 2.3%, indicating a curtailment of DIY growth, as many homeowners completed planned projects throughout this year and the last.
However, this is still predicted growth, and we’re sharing insight as to what the industry can expect as we continue to navigate a post-pandemic Britain.
CONSUMER SKILL-SET CONFIDENCE
The home improvement skill set has been boosted by pandemic behaviour, with many turning their hand to DIY projects throughout the spate of lockdowns we’ve had.
Now, as skilled labour becomes more available, and we increase the access to vaccinations, households feel more comfortable with contractors in their home. A continuing strong economy suggests spending by contractors will actually improve year-on-year.
LACK OF AVAILABLE HOMES TO BUY
There’s a reason many prospective buyers have struggled to purchase a home in 2021. Low mortgage rates have led to a surge in buyer demand, but there hasn’t been enough inventory to meet that demand. As such, home prices have soared on a national level, and even buyers with larger budgets are having difficulties finding a suitable place to make an offer on.
ECONOMIC CLIMATE WORRIES
The UK economy is in far better shape these days than it was back when the pandemic first hit. The jobless rate has steadily declined, and there are plenty of employment opportunities available. But despite those improvements, many sellers still say the current economic climate makes them hesitant to make a big life change, like selling a home and moving to a new one.
A lot of people are still working remotely in the wake of the pandemic and aren’t sure whether they’ll get to do so on a permanent basis or not. As such, many workers’ moving plans are in flux. So, it’s not surprising that another big reason people aren’t selling homes is that they’re just not sure where they want to move to.
Despite disruptions, the sector’s rebound is still on track with the value of underlying project starts set to rise 7% next year and by a further 5% in 2023.Glenigan UK Construction Industry Forecast 2022-2023
So it’s not all doom and gloom; there’s a good chance housing inventory will pick up at some point in 2022, though most likely not until the second quarter of the year at the earliest.
And those with the opportunity to take advantage of the current interest rates should, as chances are they won’t stay put at multi-decade lows for much longer. Whether this means a move or releasing money to improve, as the job market stabilises and people are surer of their work at home status, we might just see another boom in home and garden office expansion projects.