How the surge in demand for major home improvements will impact the fenestration industry

Victoria Brocklesby, COO at Origin, discusses the impact of the pandemic on demand for home improvements and how this demand will affect the fenestration industry.

For many, the pandemic has been an incredibly challenging time, testing our economic and environmental resolve. Thankfully, slowly but surely, we are emerging out the other side.

Over the past 18 months, we have seen an interesting trend emerge showing that people are increasingly re-evaluating their home living environment. After spending much more time at home than usual, due to the numerous lockdowns and the rise in working from home, many homeowners have decided to prioritise improving the space they live in, which is only good news for those of us operating within the fenestration industry.

This movement has been made possible by homeowners saving more money during the pandemic than they usually would because there have been fewer opportunities to travel and socialise. This saved disposable income is now being put to good use as homeowners seek to upgrade their properties.

In fact, the latest consumer data from TGI shows that five percent of UK adults anticipate making home improvements within the next year – this equates to 2.5 million people.

So, will this increased demand for home improvements put extra pressure on the supply chain?

Naturally with more people embarking on renovations and more housebuilding taking place, there is a surge in demand. This will directly impact the supply chain and its ability to continue delivering on time and in full, as it deals with the increased number of orders. When you also factor in large scale projects, like HS2 for example, which is one of the biggest undertakings in recent history and requires huge amounts of traditional construction materials, it is easy to understand why some businesses are panicking.

A lack of materials causes delays at the manufacturing phase, which in turn, causes delivery and construction setbacks. For those working in the fenestration and manufacturing industries, delays must be avoided at all costs. They lead to poor cashflow, as well as missing out on future business due to capacity restraints, and negatively impacts business reputation.

In my opinion, it is possible to ensure the supply chain continues to work for manufacturers and their customers, despite an increase in demand. In the case of Origin, we work hard to ensure that our network of over 1,000 partners across the UK can always rely on us to deliver the products they need, when they need them – without compromising on their quality.

And we can continue to do this throughout busy periods due to the robust systems we have put in place in response to Covid and that were already established to counteract the impact of Brexit. These include, stockpiling aluminium, increasing our warehouse facilities by 87%and capacity, expanding our production facilities and strengthening our supply chain relationships.

For anyone who has successfully navigated through the worst of the pandemic, there are now ample opportunities ready for the taking. Even for those who may have struggled, there is reason to be optimistic.

Futureproofing is the key to managing through difficult times, even if that is in a once in a lifetime global pandemic. Having reliable and dependable suppliers behind you with their own robust systems in place is what you need to meet and keep up with demand.