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BHETA ECONOMIC SNAPSHOT


CAN YOU SPEAK THE LANGUAGE?


The latest facts and figures from the British Home Enhancement Trades Association – and what they mean for suppliers to the home improvement industry.


B


HETA DIY sector director Paul Grinsell says: “While 60% of Global DIY Summit delegates declared themselves positive


about the growth potential of our industry, two thirds of those optimists were forecasting 4% or less. So, it’s not as if the DIY market can afford complacency, even on a global stage. Being proactive is vital and some BHETA members see the most positive route forward as export – hence the formation of the BHETA export committee – but not all ‘new markets’ are overseas. One of the most challenging but exciting market is at home where DIY is no longer DIY but home improvement and what are repurposing or upcycling projects or even craft. This is why I ask the question: can you speak the language and are you exploring the implications and the opportunities it presents?


Interestingly, ‘A New


Era – a Glimpse into the Future of Home Improvement’ was the motto of the Global DIY Summit – note ‘home improvement’ not ‘DIY’ in the context of where we are heading – and even a cursory glance at the websites of the leading mass market retailers reveals that they too have stopped speaking DIY.


If the mass market is now all about home improvement whether performed by the consumer or the tradesperson, we all need to ensure our sales and marketing and indeed product development reflects this when we target the mainstream customer.


So, does this mean that DIY is a dead language? Well, no. Thankfully, it’s still being spoken by a new generation – Generation DIY, in fact – and for the most part, they speak it online. Have a browse on Pinterest to see the massive number of times the acronym ‘DIY’ is mentioned and the massive number of contexts in which it is used. If you haven’t reached it already, then the conclusion must be that, if you still want to sell DIY then these are options to explore – online


8 DIY WEEK 21 JULY 2017


marketing to consumers, upcycling and repurposing projects and when does a DIY tool turn into crafting implement?”


Consumer Price Index May 2017 The Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH, not a National Statistic) 12-month inflation rate was 2.7% in May 2017, up from 2.6% in April. The rate has been steadily


increasing following a period of relatively low inflation in 2015 and is at its highest since April 2012. Rising prices for recreational and cultural goods and services (particularly games, toys and hobbies) was the main contributor to the increase in the rate. There were smaller upward contributions from increased electricity and food prices.


Retail sales May 2017


In May 2017, the quantity bought in the retail industry was estimated to have increased by 0.9% compared with May 2016; the annual growth rate was last lower in April 2013. Non-food stores were the main contributing factors to this slowdown with an annual fall of 1.2% and predominantly food stores saw the lowest annual growth since July 2013 at 0.1%.


Month on month, the quantity bought was estimated to have fallen by 1.2% following strong growth in April 2017. The underlying pattern, as measured by the three-month- on-three-month change showed growth of 0.6% in May 2017.


Mortgage approvals March 2016 The Council of Mortgage Lenders estimates that gross mortgage lending reached £21.4 billion in March. This is 19% higher than February’s lending total of £17.9 billion and 19% lower than the £26.3 billion lent in March last year. The sharp fall in year-on-year lending was expected as March last year saw significant rises in activity as borrowers rushed to beat the second property stamp duty deadline that came into effect from the beginning of April.


There are options to explore, like ‘when does a DIY tool turn into a crafting implement?’


House Price Index April 217 According to the Council of Mortgage Lenders gross mortgage lending for April is estimated at £18.4 billion.


Accounting for seasonal factors, this figure is higher than average lending over the past year. Transactions continue to be driven by first-time buyers, as all other parts of the market remain weaker than this time last year.


Remortgage activity and first- time buyers continue to drive lending growth as buy-to-let and home mover numbers remain subdued. The number of first-time buyers over the past 12 months has overtaken the number of home movers for the first time since 1996.


UK labour market February-April 2017 Estimates from the Labour Force Survey show that, between November 2016 to January 2017 and February to April 2017, the number of people in work increased, the number of unemployed people fell and the number of people aged from 16 to 64 not working and not seeking or available to work (economically inactive) also fell. There were 31.95 million people in work, 109,000 more than for November 2016 to January 2017 and 372,000 more than for a year earlier.


Construction output April 2017 Output in the construction industry fell 0.6% in the 3 month on 3 month time series, driven mainly by a 0.9% fall in all new work, representing the first 3 month on 3 month fall in construction output since September 2016. Construction output also fell month on month in April 2017, dropping 1.6%; driven by falls in both repair and maintenance and all new work. The fall in all new work in April 2017 was somewhat offset by a sizeable rise in infrastructure which grew by 5.7% compared with March 2017.


Commodity prices May 2017 Energy commodity prices declined 4% in May 2017 while non-energy prices increased slightly. Food prices gained 2.4% while beverage prices declined 1%. Metals and minerals prices slid 2.4% and precious metals eased 2.6%.


Foreign Exchange Analysis Reuters Thursday, June 22 Sterling traded slightly below $1.27 on Thursday 22, June, investors treading water after a split at the Bank of England over monetary policy added further uncertainty to the outlook for Britain’s economy as it leaves the European Union. 1 GBP = 1.133 EUR 1 GBP = 1.266 USD


www.diyweek.net


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