KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
11th December 2015
We strongly recommend viewing KBzine full size in your web browser. Click our masthead above to visit our website version.
Please note that you are viewing an archived issue of The KBzine.
I'm well aware from my estate agency experience that a downstairs cloakroom is on many buyers' lists of criteria and the convenience this adds to a family or even someone living alone is quite obvious. However, I've noticed over the past 10 years that this now tends to be lower down on the list than the 'en suite to the master bedroom'.
It appears that when discussing home improvements, renovations and refurbishments - or indeed creating additional value, the humble 'downstairs loo' has become the poor relation to the more ubiquitous 'en-suite' - but have we been casting our eyes in the wrong direction in terms of return-on-investment?
The best barometer of intangible value could be calculated by the amount of use a downstairs facility gets or the number of people it benefits. The intangible value knows no bounds as it supports the needs of whole family - particularly useful for felt-pen wielding minors and less limber seniors! For those who like to entertain at home but don't wish to invite multiple guests to traipse up-and-down the stairs and give them the opportunity to peer into the boudoir or form a disorderly queue outside the poor overworked family bathroom, then a downstairs loo is a saving grace.
With the plethora of compact cloakroom suites offered by this industry, where or how to position a cloakroom will take a lot of potential customers by surprise. People won't necessarily need to knock down walls or build an extension to fit one into a typical home...
A large cupboard, under-stair space or a portion of a room that can be syphoned off, could offer the perfect place. Asa Bentley, managing director of MakeurMove (www.makeurmove.co.uk), says that the cost of installing a downstairs cloakroom will typically range between £2,500 and £4,000 including materials and labour, and take between one and two weeks to complete. But just how much value will it add to a property?
Asa says we should expect to see around 5% increase in value - which, based on Office of National Statistics September 2015 average house price figures, equates to up to £18,000 (£26,500 in London). Not bad for a small outlay and a little inconvenience, is it? And an idea definitely worth suggesting to people browsing a showroom, who may never have previously considered adding such a useful - and money-making - facility to their home...
This Week's News
In a survey by Hotpoint, the brand revealed that over 42% of those polled believe that dishwashers are a waste of either water or energy, whilst over 55% expressed they don't have enough space for a dishwasher*. These beliefs have resulted in poor dishwasher penetration in the UK of just 41.9%, whilst Germany and France reap the rewards of these efficient appliances at 69 and 63%**.
Glass mosaic and decorative solid surfaces specialist, Trend, has launched its new Trascenda agglomerate range, with integrated patterns inspired by the world's finest natural marble, vivid childhood memories and weathered materials at its 19th century Orsoni smalti workshop.
Created using cutting-edge dye sublimation techniques, the distinctive designs are embedded into the surface of Trend's slimline granite, quartz, porcelain or even recycled glass composite sheets, so that permanent images are transferred into the material. The host agglomerate sheet retains all of its technical properties, so these beautiful surfaces are non-porous, low maintenance and resistant to heat, impact, scratch, stains and chemical cleaners.
Dream Doors, the UK's largest kitchen makeover retailer, has announced record financial results for 2015, on the back of a year where it opened 12 new showrooms across the UK and Ireland and unveiled a comprehensive new recruitment and training programme for franchisees.
With its financial year running to the end of December, Dream Doors is set to achieve a 2015 turnover of £26M, an increase of more than 21% on 2014's results. The average turnover per franchise has also increased to £500,000 in 2015.
New to Aestus's Designer Italian Collection, by Graziano, is a wintertime collection of contemporary towel rails for the bathroom or kitchen.
A new 130 page MTW Research report on the rainwater harvesting market states that there will be more than 60,000 rainwater harvesting systems in use within the next few years. It says that the housebuilding market is slowly embracing rainwater harvesting, with at least one housebuilder identified in the report, committing to include rainwater harvesting systems in all its developments in the next four years.
"Some housebuilders recognise they can add significant value through rainwater harvesting technology and this is providing a volume boost to the market," notes MTW's director Mark Waddy. "Given the forecast upturn in new build activity, the opportunities in this sector for growth are compelling."
Developed by Lifestyle Design and Build, (www.lifestylebyasq.co.uk), the apartments at Riverside Court feature DEVImat self-adhesive electric mesh heating systems to provide warm floors in the bathrooms. Ideal as a supplementary heating system, DEVImat can also be used as a room heating system, depending on the heat loss of the room.
Duravit has increased its line-up of showering solutions with the introduction of the Stonetto and P3 Comforts shower trays. Fashioned from two new materials, DuraSolid Q and DuraSolid A, they combine performance with aesthetics and offer an attractive alternative to acrylic.
Stonetto is amazingly similar to stone... a stone that has been worn down by water is smooth and has an even surface without rough edges. Its robustness and pleasantly polished surface makes it both hard yet soft.
CIH held a suppliers lunch at The Dorchester Hotel in London recently and it was at this event that the Electrolux group, which consists of AEG, Electrolux and Zanussi, was announced as the winner of the 'supplier of the year' award to Euronics.
Robin Millwood, the chairman of CIH said: "The Electrolux Group has shown great commitment to CIH through delivering a comprehensive range of exclusive products to support its Agency initiative".
Miele's latest W1 generation of washing machines offer gentle fabric care, outstanding cleaning performance and convenience.
The cabinets work well in both contemporary or traditional homes as these new images demonstrate - the Moss & Stone finish gives the bedroom a classic and elegant look while the Storm Grey finish is very much on trend, cool and current.
HydroHalt is a new upstand sealing system for sealing perimeter joints around shower trays and baths. Simple to install in both new and existing installations and ideal for regular, slimline and upstand trays and with liquid and mat waterproof tanking systems, it is both flexible and durable.
The82 litre Self Cleaning Oven is equipped with a fully programmable timer that can be used to start and stop the oven at a specific time, alerting the user when the food is ready.
Grohe tells us it is delighted to present its newly restyled Eurostyle mixer range. First launched in 1999, the mixers are characterised by their stylish, softly curved appearance. Now, they are available in a brilliant striking white finish, as well as the traditional chrome.
Equipped with the latest technical features, the Eurostyle falls into the category of affordable luxury- so everyone can enjoy Grohe quality and style.
Van operators must remind their drivers of the increased dangers of winter driving, according to The Fuelcard People. Steve Clarke, group marketing manager, has commented upon a joint publication from the Department of Transport and the National Office for Statistics, modelling the impact of the weather on road casualty statistics.
He says: "Common sense dictates that road accidents are more likely in bad weather, but this research shows just how seriously fleets could be affected and it has important duty of care implications."
Responsible for key marketing activity, Kayleigh will deliver effective campaigns and point of sale material to support customers and improve communication through the Aqata website and a dynamic social media strategy.
The KBzine Archive Search
We keep an extensive archive of news stories and product information that have featured in past issues of The KBzine. If you would like to run a search of the The KBzine web site using the search tool below please just go ahead by entering in the name of the person, product or company or any other key words that you are looking for.
How to contact us at The KBzine:
REQUEST THE KBZINE HERE
The KBzine is broadcast
every Friday. You may receive it FREE each week by
clicking the link above.
Ian Hall, joint managing director, comments: "Steve has in effect been fulfilling this role at Utopia since 2013 and we are now very pleased to recognise this formally.