Suppliers are recovering well after lockdown according to the Bathroom Manufacturers Association. Following unprecedented falls in sales during March and April, suppliers have seen a gradual increase in demand as restrictions have gradually eased. Now BMA members’ consolidated sales are close to ordinary levels, the trade body reports, with some companies even posting a record month in July.
The news reflects wider optimism throughout the repair, maintenance, and improvement market. Last month, a BMA/Opinium poll revealed that nearly a third of UK adults are likely to undertake a partial or full bathroom refurbishment in the next 12 months. Meanwhile, some tradespeople have been boosted by the Government’s Green Homes Grant and stamp duty measures have stimulated the housing market to have its busiest month in a decade.
Tom Reynolds, Chief Executive of the BMA, welcomed the news that members are winning the recovery fight:
“When sales levels plummeted at the start of lockdown it looked like 2020 was going to be a catastrophic year for the sector, so it is great to see such a strong bounce back. BMA’s member companies have proved incredibly resilient and are well placed to make the most of the current optimism.”
However, Reynolds also warned about several downside risks for the industry:
“This should in no way dampen current optimism, but there are a number of risks we still need to keep in mind. Local lockdowns, second spikes, and a messy end to the Brexit transition period could all scupper our recovery. So, in short, the industry still needs the support of Government to secure a solid recovery.”
David Osborne, Managing Director of Roman Showers, and the BMA’s Marketing Committee Chairman was also positive.
“At Roman we continued to work throughout the lockdown and were among the first factories to start back. We have had very strong demand for our products as the COVID19 restrictions have eased. We were confident that homeowners might invest some of the cash saved by not going out or on holiday, in their homes. That seems to be coming true and when planning improvements they’re choosing brands that embody quality.”