More time indoors leads to boom in home renovations

More time indoors leads to boom in home renovations
  • Rated People’s annual Trends Report reveals a 12% rise in demand for home improvement jobs in 2020
  • Home and garden maintenance topped the list of most in-demand jobs during lockdown
  • Birmingham topped the list regionally, with over half (53%) of homeowners making enhancements to their homes in 2020
  • Glasgow is set to lead the home renovation boom in 2021, with 60% of homeowners planning to renovate their homes this year

New research from Rated People has found that spending more time at home during the coronavirus lockdowns sparked a nationwide boom in home renovations during 2020.

Within its annual Trends Report, the find-a-tradesperson platform reports that the first lockdown in March increased our appetite for improving our homes and this only continued throughout the year. Indoor house maintenance and repair topped the list of jobs that we needed professional help with during the first lockdown, and restrictions on visiting public recreation areas meant we were keen to make sure our gardens were fit to spend time in.

The top 10 most popular home improvement jobs during the first national lockdown:

  • Home maintenance and repair
  • Garden maintenance
  • Plumbing repair and maintenance
  • Internal painting and decorating
  • Electrical installation and testing
  • Bathroom, kitchen and WC plumbing
  • Landscaping
  • Home improvements
  • Wooden, metal or wire fences
  • Garden clearance

As lockdowns and local tier restrictions continued throughout 2020, and the number of people working from home rose to 55%, demand for home improvements soared – no doubt helped by trade businesses remaining relatively unaffected by government restrictions. Rated People saw a surge in homeowners looking to refresh, update and enhance their homes, leading to a 12% overall increase in the number of jobs posted year on year during 2020.

Overall, the Trends Report found that 46% of homeowners across the UK undertook a project during 2020, whether big or small, but there were notable regional variations when it came to our appetite for making updates. Birmingham and Glasgow led the home renovation revolution, with 53% of homeowners making improvements to their homes during 2020, followed by Belfast and Brighton.

The top 10 cities where the most people did home improvement work in 2020:

  • Birmingham 53% (of homeowners)
  • Glasgow 53%
  • Belfast 52%
  • Brighton 50%
  • Norwich 48%
  • Sheffield 48%
  • London 48%
  • Liverpool 47%
  • Bristol 45%
  • Newcastle 45%

Rated People’s research also found that our enthusiasm for home renovations is set to continue throughout 2021, with more than half (51%) of people planning to enhance their homes this year. Jobs that we are planning to do in 2021 include painting (44%), bathroom refits (18%), kitchen renovations (17%) and loft conversions (10%).

The top regions set to improve their homes the most this year are:

  • Glasgow 60%
  • Newcastle 56%
  • Liverpool 55%
  • Cardiff 54%
  • Belfast 52%
  • London 52%
  • Manchester 52%
  • Southampton 52%
  • Birmingham 49%
  • Sheffield 49%

Adrienne Minster, CEO ofRated Peoplesaid: “We’ve completed a wide range of projects since the pandemic began, with lockdown helping to reignite our passion for home improvements. People have been looking more closely at what they can do with the space they currently have to make their homes more inviting for the day when they can finally welcome friends and family back inside again. 

The fact that so many homeowners across the UK felt comfortable allowing tradespeople into their homes during a pandemic is testament to the professionalism of trades businesses and their commitment to following the latest health and safety guidelines. Like many other sectors, tradespeople faced significant challenges in 2020, but the industry adapted quickly to restrictions, bouncing back strongly in the second half of the year.” 

Rated People’s Trends Report is an annual guide to what’s going on in the world of UK home renovations. In 2021, the report used a representative sample of more than 500,000 jobs and surveyed 2,000 UK residents nationwide to identify the updates we’ve been making and the improvements we’re planning for the year ahead.

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