Bathroom manufacturers winning Covid battle as some report record July sales

The Bathroom Manufacturers Association (BMA) has reported widespread optimism in the repair, maintenance and home improvement markets as some of its members have posted record July sales.

Business took an unprecedented it during March and April because of the nationwide coronavirus lockdown, but the BMA said its members have reported that sales are nearly back to normal levels as restrictions have been eased.

This reflects the findings of last month’s BMA/Opinium poll, which sound that nearly a third of UK adults said they were likely to undertake a partial or full bathroom refurbishment in the next 12 months.

The BMA also said that some tradespeople had seen business boosted by the Government’s Green Homes Grant and the Chancellor’s move to scrap stamp duty on house purchases up to £500,000 until April 2021. This meant the housing market had its busiest month in a decade.

BMA chief executive Tom Reynolds welcomed the news from members that they are winning the fight for recovery. He said: “When sales levels plummeted at the start of lockdown, it looked like 2020 was going to be a catastrophic year for the sector, so it is great to see such a strong bounce back. The BMA’s member companies have proved incredibly resilient and are well placed to make the most of the current optimism.”

Striking an equally positive note, David Osborne, managing director of Roman Showers and BMA marketing committee chairman, said: “At Roman, we continued to work throughout the lockdown and were among the first factories to start back. We have had very strong demand for our products as the Covid-19 restrictions have eased. We were confident that homeowners might invest some of the cash, saved by not going out or on holiday, in their homes. That seems to be coming true and when planning improvements they’re choosing brands that embody quality.”

Reynolds sounded a note of caution, however, warning that, while not wishing to “dampen current optimism”, there were still risks for the industry ahead: “There are a number of risks we still need to keep in mind. Local lockdowns, second spikes, and a messy end to the Brexit transition period could all scupper our recovery. So, in short, the industry still needs the support of Government to secure a solid recovery.”


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