The overall level of residential planning decisions granted in Great Britain has remained fairly stable over the last 5 years despite the economic uncertainty and relatively low levels of consumer confidence.
steady improvement in the economy and housing market in 2013 had a positive impact
for the overall home repair and refurbishment sector, which increased by around
2%. The presently more positive economic outlook also influenced the number of
householder improvements granted by the planning authorities, with an upturn in
terms of regions, England accounted for 89% of ‘householder developments’ in
2013, up from 87% in 2009, with Scotland accounting for 6% and Wales 5%. The
majority of householder planning decisions granted were for building extensions,
with single and two storey accounting for around half of all projects
storey extensions were estimated to account for around 37% of householder
developments in 2013, while two storey extensions were estimated to account for
around 13% of householder developments. Two storey extensions cover a variety
of applications and incorporate a wide range of products including bedrooms,
bathrooms, utility rooms, a garage etc., in addition to an extension of the
living and kitchen areas.
“The nature of the
extension can vary from the installation of a new kitchen and open plan living
area to a simple utility room and downstairs cloakroom. In 2013, the vast
majority incorporated a kitchen and living area” said Keith Taylor,
Director of AMA Research. “The growth of
the trend towards contemporary design has motivated consumers to create a clean
and uncluttered look throughout much of their home. This has led to a demand
for more open plan arrangements, particularly in existing homes where improvement
and redesign is undertaken”.
the UK economy remains fragile, there is more optimism for a continued recovery
in the construction industry and the housing market, along with improving
consumer confidence & spending. Low interest rates and rising house prices
are encouraging consumers to undertake larger scale home improvements,
particularly as there have now been a number of years of deferral of product
replacements and home improvements.
late 2014 and beyond, average UK house prices are forecast to rise by around 6%
in 2014 and thereafter by between 4% and 5% to 2017 driven by the continued
economic recovery and prospective rises in average earnings. Rising house
prices in the longer term should provide underlying support for the home
improvement market, particularly high value improvements such as building
the expectation that interest rates are eventually set to rise in 2015, will
exacerbate affordability issues and slow house price growth to around 2-3% by
2018. Consequently, the level of building extensions is expected to achieve
modest growth in the medium term, reflecting growing consumer confidence and
spending and perhaps a return to the trend of carrying out improvements prior
to placing properties on the market.
issues are the main barrier to growth as banks and building societies require
more information regarding borrowers' finances in order to assess their income,
outgoings along with potential interest rate increases, before making a
decision on how much to lend. However, it is reasonable to assume that
homeowners with good levels of equity and those considered low risk by lenders
will continue to undertake improvements, which should provide underlying
support for the market. In addition, overall residential RMI expenditure is
expected to achieve a steady rate of growth in the medium term to reach around
£28bn by 2018.
Extensions Market Report – GB 2014-2018 Analysis’ report is published by
AMA Research, a leading provider of market research and consultancy services with
over 25 years experience within the construction and home improvement markets.
The report is available now and can be ordered online at www.amaresearch.co.uk or by calling 01242