June 23, 2024


Built General Tough

Exclusive: Home improvement boom gives SME construction a 35 per cent lockdown boost

The home improvement boom experienced during three strict lockdowns has led to a 35 per cent increase in sales for SMEs in construction, according to new data that was shared exclusively with City A.M. today.

Figures from almost a quarter of a million invoices recorded by 915 trade SMEs has shown that the average invoice value in 2021 is 6 per cent higher than those recorded in 2020, with sales for the first 8 months of 2021 amounting £111m, compared to the £82m recorded for the same period last year, according to research by field service management software firm Powered Now.

What is particularly interesting from the data is the continual increase of the average value for invoices throughout 2021.

Originally prescribed to the national lockdowns witnessed in the Spring of 2020 and Winter of 2021, the explosion of home improvements have continued to become more valuable throughout the summer months.

Usually a quieter period for the trades, the significance of this increase is further emphasised by the growth that has continued past ‘Freedom Day’, with the average value of an invoice amounting to £1,233, reaching total monthly sales of £15.1m, making August near the highest month for deal flow in 2021, second only to March.

Speaking to City A.M. today, Ben Dyer, CEO of Powered Now, said that “since the reopening of the construction sector after the very first lockdown in 2020, there has been an unprecedented boom period. Sales in 2020 surpassed those in 2019, which was totally unexpected as we learnt how to deal with the pandemic.”

“2021 by all accounts has taken us all by surprise even further,” he continued. “Starting the year with an equally restrictive lockdown didn’t dent the appetite of the British public for home improvements, and even the very well documented shortages of labour and materials couldn’t deter Brits from going on a renovation bonanza.”

“The knock-on effect of this golden year for tradespeople has meant that the trade has become a hugely popular sector for job seekers, and we’re seeing training courses becoming over-subscribed as education centres are inundated with new apprentices,” Dyer concluded.