You can’t turn on the television or pick up a newspaper these days without seeing one thing: coronavirus. Forgive the pun, but it’s everywhere right now. There’s barely been a front page or a lead story in a news bulletin that hasn’t focused on the pandemic. Of course, that’s all perfectly understandable – but it does mean that 2020 has all seemed very negative overall. Again, unfortunately, a fair amount of negativity is also understandable. This year has proven to be an extremely tough one for many small businesses. The hospitality sector, particularly, has faced a really hard time. However, regardless of what you might see in the press, it’s not all bad news. Business is booming in certain areas. If you don’t believe us, just try and book a tradesperson right now. You can expect a long wait!
Why Business is Booming in the Kitchen Industry
Kitchen Warehouse have seen an 80% jump in sales since before the start of the Covid pandemic and the lockdowns that have been imposed during the year. But, why is this the case?
Basically, for long periods of time this year, many people have literally been made to stay at home. People have either been working from home or have been furloughed. Either way, we are spending more time in our homes. Naturally, when that happens, our thoughts will turn to home improvements. Of course, whilst 2020 has been financially difficult for a lot of people, for others the situation has actually left people with a bit of spare cash and more disposable income. One of the major family annual expenses of the year – holidays – have been a complete wash-out and have had to be cancelled. As an alternative, people’s attention has turned to upgrading their homes. Homeowners have decided to invest the spare money they have in improving their properties.
The home improvement boom dates back to May
The year’s home improvement season really began in earnest during the May. It was during this month that the likes of hardware and DIY stores were allowed to reopen. Household goods stores saw a massive 42% increase in sales, according to the Office of National Statistics. As an example, The Kingfisher Group, who include the likes of B&Q in their portfolio saw a like-for-like sales of other 20% in the three months to the middle of July.
Not only that, online sales soared by a massive 200%. So, even back as far as the late spring and early summer, the home improvement sector could rightly say that business is booming. At the time, the top sales were in paint and wallpaper, and compost and plants. This suggests that the focus was very much on the interior and exterior of our homes.
Staying in – the new normal?
Surveys conducted earlier this year during lockdown showed that 63% of people were improving their home for a simple reason. The reason was that as they were spending more time at home, they wanted to be more comfortable in it.
So, it would seem that the experiences of this year have seen many of us placing a higher emphasis on our own comfort. Other studies this year asked people what their dream home would look like post-Covid. Top choices included the likes of a garden studio, gym, leisure room, and a home office.
Of course, it’s unclear at this stage whether these results suggest that staying in is going to become the new normal post-pandemic. It might be that we will actively decide to stay at home more in the future. It could also be that we want to make sure that we are well-equipped and have options if we are forced to do so again in the years to come.
£55 billion spent on home improvement since lockdown began
The figures that show just how much us Brits have spent on home improvements since lockdown began in March are eyewatering. The 2020 Renovation Nation Report, published in August 2020, found that on average UK homeowners had spent £4,035.70 each on home renovation in the six months since lockdown started. Garden upgrades topped the list with 34%. This is unsurprising because if you remember the weather during the first period of lockdown was pretty good. Families were able to meet in bubbles outside at first, so many homeowners obviously wanted to make the most of their gardens.
Another key factor driving people’s desire to invest in their home is something that nobody had really heard of pre-Covid: ‘Zoombarrassment’. Yes, many people working from home using Zoom felt so embarrassed about the appearance of their homes that it prompted them to take action!
So, the home improvement sector can justifiably say that business is booming. But where do kitchens fit into all of this? 22% of respondents to the survey said that they had spent money on their kitchens. That’s not surprising as kitchens are always high on the list of priorities when it comes to home improvements. Kitchen renovations add value to your home and, of course, we are spending more and more time in the kitchen too.
Why should you improve your kitchen?
Of course, the reason why business is booming in the world of kitchen improvements isn’t just down to the fact that it has given people something to do during lockdown. It’s more than that. People have had time to think and reflect in the last few months. They have considered what it is important in life. This is why the kitchen has come so sharply into focus. There are several good reasons why spending some money on your kitchen is a fantastic idea.
Improve functionality and convenience
One of the top reasons to remodel your kitchen is to improve its functionality. Essentially, it’s about making the space work for you better and making it more user-friendly. If a kitchen hasn’t had an update in a while, it’s likely that they are little bits of awkwardness, such as a lack of countertop space or a poorly placed fridge. Over time, you get used to these issues and learn to live with them. However, that doesn’t mean that you have to forever. A new kitchen design is your opportunity for a new start and a brand-new beginning. Embrace the change!
A kitchen that hasn’t been updated recently might have started to look a bit tired and worn. A new kitchen is your chance to freshen things up and revitalise the space.
Meeting your family’s needs
If you’re raising a growing family, your household needs are changing. This means that your kitchen needs to move with the times and evolve into a space that truly meets the needs of the family. That might mean you need more storage or more seating space. It could mean that increased countertop space has become a pressing concern. It might mean that a different oven option or a larger fridge has become a necessity.
Alternatively, you might instead want to transform your kitchen space into a room that is geared towards parties and entertaining. You want a kitchen that totally fits your lifestyle and your needs.
There’s never really a bad time to update the style and design of a kitchen so that it reflects your own personal style as much as possible. We spend a lot of time in the kitchen these days. It really needs to be a space that we feel really comfortable in.
Resale value and energy savings
Last but not least, comes the all-important subject of money. Business is booming right now with kitchen improvements because many people have got a bit of extra money around, saved from not being able to go on holiday this year. Others are going down the kitchen improvement route because they see it as an investment.
Typically, homeowners who renovate their kitchens can see as much as 90% of the cost of the kitchen added to the home’s value when they come to sell. Even if it’s not about adding actual value to your home, bear in mind that an attractive and appealing kitchen is a big selling point. The state of the kitchen is often a dealbreaker for potential buyers, so giving your kitchen a makeover makes very good sense.
A kitchen refit is also a smart way of saving on energy and water bills, as you switch over to more environmentally friendly appliances.
So, all in all, now is a great time to be thinking about a new kitchen, or maybe some kitchen replacement doors. If you would like to chat about your many options, just get in touch with the Kitchen Warehouse team through the website or email us at [email protected].