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Case Study – UK Renovations in 2020

With the events of COVID-19 completely turning plans on their head, the renovations picture in the UK in 2020 showed some interesting developments.

Case Study – UK Renovations in 2020

Case Study – UK Renovations in 2020

With the UK spending large parts of 2020 either in lockdown, or restricted under the various tier systems, it’s reported that around £55 billion has been spent on renovations, averaging just over £4,000 per household since restrictions began in March.

With research suggesting that over half of UK families will spend more time at home even after restrictions are eased, it’s inspired an influx of home improvements, even with the impact of lockdowns and the furlough scheme on household’s finances.

Some of the main reasons for investing in home improvements last year include:

  • Making it more comfortable for spending extended periods of time in
  • Avoid ‘Zoombarrasement’ over the state of their homes on video calls with friends and family
  • Increasing value of the property
  • Having more money to spend on improvements
  • Expecting further lockdowns in the future

A change in priority

COVID-19 has impacted the home and working lives of UK home owners and their families, which has reflected in 2020, and may well continue into the next few years, regardless of whether future lockdowns are needed.

Since March of last year, more and more Britains have been working from home, whether that be a few times a week or permanently, and almost out of necessity, companies are realising the benefits of remote working.

Maintaining a work/life balance becomes more important than ever, so being able to create a divide, such as with a garden office, seems to be more of a consideration than ever.

It has also had a profound impact on social lives, health, and fitness, making the idea of a home bar, or a home gym more appealing.

This is further highlighted by how some of these builds are funded, with savings intended for holidays that couldn’t be taken, or weddings that couldn’t be held, instead being invested in homes.

Adding Value

In previous years, the best way to add value on to a home was to add bedrooms. Secondary to that probably came conveniences such as a downstairs bathroom, a garage, and off-street parking areas. A “man-cave” in the garden complete with a bar area, or an indoor gym, would likely have been seen as a bit of a novelty that would have had limited appeal to most home buyers. Going into 2021 and beyond however, a ready-made social space, or a working area where you can shut yourself off from the rest of the house could be seen as a huge benefit compared to other properties.

The “wish-list” for home owners and buyers alike is changing, and whether this will be for the short-term only or signify a permanent shift in people’s ways of lives, we probably can’t decide until after the pandemic comes to an end, and we have time for the dust to settle.

Garden Renovations

One area of the economy that will almost definitely have seen a boost are companies selling garden furniture and equipment, with the garden becoming the substitute for the beach or the park in times of isolation. At times, the garden has offered some rare opportunities for social interraction depending on lockdown rules at the time.

It’s reported that items such as fire pits, outside lighting and electric heaters for the garden have at least doubled in the number of online search enquiries, and those into their sports such as golf and football will have found that nets, allowing for practice at home, have been difficult to keep in stock. It’s a sign that now, more than ever, the garden will be used for more than just the summer months going forward.

This is further supported by an increase in searches for gazebos, awnings and outdoor blankets, suggesting that gardens will be in use for more than a few months per year.

Whatever your renovation plans going into 2021 and beyond, it’s worth having an insurance company on hand who can accommodate all projects. GSI Insurance (Services) Southern Ltd. have an extensive panel of insurers that can arrange the policy you need for the job. Give us a call on 0800 612 9376 or click “Get a Quote” to complete our online form.

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