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Homeowners plan to spend £135 billion on makeovers in the next year, according to Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles research

ByDave Stopher

Aug 23, 2021 #Volkswagen
  • Two-thirds of homeowners are planning improvements in the next year*
  • Almost half of UK homeowners delayed work due to COVID-19
  • Plumbers and electricians will be most in-demand during bumper year for tradespeople
  • New kitchen ranks top of makeover wishlist, ahead of gardens, bathrooms, and bedrooms

Milton Keynes, UK – Two-thirds (66 per cent) of homeowners are planning home improvements in the next year, according to a study by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. Nearly half (41 per cent) have delayed renovations due to COVID-19, and the cost of home makeovers is now expected to exceed £135 billion**.

With almost 1 in 5 Brits moving house in the last year to cash in on the Stamp Duty holiday, and others looking to remodel their homes to cater for the rise in home-working, 2021 is forecast to be a bumper year for home improvement.

Just a quarter of people say they will do all the work themselves, meaning tradespeople will be in high demand. According to the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles research, plumbers and electricians will be the most sought after, followed by decorators, builders, and plasterers.

On average, homeowners are planning to spend £13,958 on their makeovers – adding up to a total bill of £135 billion across the UK, with one in five budgeting over £20,000. A new kitchen is in highest demand, followed by a re-landscaped garden, bathroom renovation, and redecoration in the bedroom or living room.

The research by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles also asked how people will go about finding a tradesperson to do their work, with word of mouth most common. For those short on recommendations, advertising in local newspapers, on social media, and displaying a strong van livery ranked as the best places for tradespeople to get noticed.

On average homeowners will get three competing quotes before selecting the person for the job, with respondents ranking value for money, reviews, and availability the top three reasons they end up handing the contract to a tradesperson.

Charlie Mullins, chairman of Pimlico Plumbers, which has operated a Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles fleet for over 35 years and provides building, plumbing and electrical services, explained: “People have found themselves spending more time at home and it seems they have been giving more thought to making existing spaces work better for their families, and that often means new kitchens, bathrooms, and even home extensions like garages, sheds, and conservatories. Throw in the fact that many have a bit of extra cash thanks to cancelled family holidays and closed pubs and restaurants, and all of a sudden you’ve got a renovation boom on your hands.

“We’ve been busy of late; best 12 months in the company’s history if I’m being honest. And there’s loads of similar work backed up in the system, so companies like us, and tradesmen and women in general are going to be very busy for the next couple of years.”

Kate Thompson, Head of Marketing, Press and Public Relations for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: “The past 18 months have been really tough on a lot of our customers and businesses, but these figures show that for many there is light at the end of the tunnel. With so much work being planned by homeowners, our customers’ diaries will be jam-packed, which means it’s more important than ever that their vans don’t let them down.

“As part of our Working With You promise, we offer Mobile Service Clinics and extended opening hours to ensure all vehicle maintenance can be carried out while the van is not in use, allowing customers to focus on getting the job done.”

The home makeover shopping list

  1. Kitchen – 35 per cent
  2. Garden – 33 per cent
  3. Bathroom – 32 per cent
  4. Bedroom – 29 per cent
  5. Living room – 27 per cent
  6. Flooring – 20 per cent
  7. Hallway – 19 per cent
  8. Dining room – 17 per cent
  9. Roof – 15 per cent
  10. Garage – 15 per cent

The most in-demand tradespeople

  1. Plumber – 37 per cent
  2. Electrician – 30 per cent
  3. Decorator – 26 per cent
  4. Builder – 24 per cent
  5. Plasterer – 22 per cent
  6. Carpenter – 19 per cent
  7. Floorer – 18 per cent
  8. Carpet fitter – 18 per cent
  9. Landscape gardener – 16 per cent
  10. Roofer – 15 per cent

For more details on Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ award-winning range of products and services, or to find your nearest Van Centre, please visit www.volkswagen-vans.co.uk.