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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
23rd June 2017

 

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I’ve received several press releases this week regarding research into various parts of the KBB and housebuilding sectors, one of which (and an encouraging one at that) is covered in full, in this week’s news.

Another, from the Federation of Master Builders, is saying that two thirds of ‘small/medium enterprise’ house builders are struggling to find land for development and that half of them see the planning system (which does not appear to be geared up towards those wanting to build on small sites) and difficulties accessing finance, as other serious challenges. Some 40% believe the construction skills crisis is now presenting a major impediment to building more homes.

When are we going to find a way out of that one, I wonder, and enable young people who are good with their hands to leave school and take up a trade, learn from (and alongside) the best and earn a decent salary whilst doing so?

Another survey is strongly blaming the Brexit vote for people’s apparent inability to find reputable tradespeople, with many householders being told that they’re going to have to wait three weeks for the tradesperson to begin work. Bearing in mind that we’re coming out of the Summer holidays and that not one member of the famed Eastern European builders’ workforce has yet been forced to leave these shores, I have to say that I do find that one a little far-fetched!

I’ve sometimes had to wait six weeks for good tradespeople and this was long before we were granted the courtesy of a referendum – and to be honest I’d worry if someone was able to start work a day or so after I called… I expect the best tradespeople to be booked up for a while, since they’re in demand, because of their good reputation.

I do wonder whether the inability to have someone start work immediately has anything to do with the news from AMA Research that there was a 4% growth in the UK home improvement multiples market in 2015, which was worth around £7.2bn in value terms in 2015, following an increase of around 4% that year…

Perhaps DIY is considered by some to be the way forward, although having seen some of the disasters that have befallen those who’ve attempted to fit their own kitchens and bathrooms, this is one area of DIY that I’d suggest is best left to the experts!

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Yours,

* Jan-new-15.jpg

Jan Hobbs

 

 

23rd September 2016




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