DIY boom continues as Brits plan to spend £5bn on their homes before Christmas, Kantar reports

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Brits could spend £4.94 billion on improving their homes and gardens before Christmas, according to new analysis released by Kantar today.  DIYers say they still have work to do despite many households already sprucing up their properties between March and early September, including 60% of respondents painting in their home and 37% fixing or building furniture.   

Joanna Parman, strategic insight director at Kantar, comments: “The DIY season normally runs from spring until October half term to coincide with warmer weather and longer days. But this is no normal year and, as restrictions tighten again, 25% of respondents are planning additional tasks before the end of October. A larger 34% intend to complete jobs before Christmas.  If shoppers follow through with their plans, it will mean an additional £552 million is spent on DIY between September and December compared with last year – including an extra £124 million on garden work and £119 million on homeware items. This is a huge opportunity for DIY retailers and a real bright spot amid a challenging landscape.”

People have reconnected with their homes during the past six months like never before and their motivations for doing DIY reflect this. Parman comments: “We’re all spending much more time at home and half of those taking on a DIY project this year have done so to refresh their surroundings and 16% because they needed more space to relax. Meanwhile, 40% of people said they have had more time on their hands (though this is more likely to be the case for people who don’t have children) and 16% needed to adapt their spaces for home working. It’s not all work and no play though – a significant 32% of people have done DIY because they simply enjoy it”.

DIY vs DIFM (do it for me)

For some, lockdown was the push they needed to take on jobs themselves and get around to tasks they had been putting off. Parman comments: “Many shoppers have realised they can do household jobs themselves, and that it’s less expensive than hiring a tradesperson.  Looking ahead, 40% of respondents say they are going to continue to do home improvements for themselves, while 49% say they will do a mixture in future and continue to take on some of the work. This varies slightly across age groups. Younger people, who are typically less experienced in DIY, are more likely to rely solely on tradespeople in the future at 7%.

“However, retailers shouldn’t disregard people who intend to use tradespeople in the next six months. This group has significant spending power, buying £46 million worth of DIY supplies during this period, but they are more likely to have picked up their tools and materials in supermarkets than the average DIY shopper – suggesting they find specialist DIY stores overwhelming or not worth travelling to. DIY retailers should consider ways to make themselves more accessible to these reluctant DIYers if they are going to capture some of their spend in the coming months and entice them away from the high street and supermarkets.”