Economic uncertainty in the UK has strongly impacted the housing market in the country, with house prices rapidly surging across the UK. Moreover, the increase in the interest rate by the Bank of England in August 2018 contributed to making mortgages more expensive.
During the period from June to August 2018, the sales of home and garden specialist retailers increased as a result of the hot weather. Consumers demanded garden furniture, barbecues and gardening tools.
In 2018, several players, including Homebase, Bunnings, Carpetright and Multiyork, fell into administration, due to the high level of debt they accumulated. As leases and rents became more expensive and consumers turned away from physical stores to shop online, the profits of home and garden specialist retailers continued to tighten.
The home improvement and gardening store B&Q maintained its lead in overall home and garden specialist retailers in 2018, even though its value sales declined for the second consecutive year. Nonetheless, the hot summer weather in 2018 contributed to limiting the decline, as consumers increased their spending on hosepipes and other gardening products, in addition to charcoal.
The unstable economic conditions and the increase of internet sales led a significant number of home and garden specialist retailers to enter administration. Wesfarmers, the parent company of the brands Homebase and Bunnings, entered administration in the first months of 2018.
Homewares and home furnishings stores suffered from the strong increase in online sales. Many players saw substantial declines in their value sales.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Retailing market research database.