The cost of living squeeze – home redecoration is in, social activities and restaurants to suffer
Staying in remains the new going out as new research reveals spending priorities are groceries and home redecoration
Results from a survey that looked at changing consumer behaviour amid the cost of living crisis has revealed that home really is where the heart is, with redecoration emerging as one of the lowest sacrifice areas as home owners look to cut back on other lifestyle factors in tough times.
Flooring retailer Factory Direct Flooring (FDF) unveiled results from its survey of more than 1,000 female respondents from across the UK, which highlighted how homeowners will prioritise their spend as the spiralling cost of living squeezes the nation’s finances.
Just 12 per cent of those surveyed indicated they would cut back on home redecoration – only beaten in the priority stakes by groceries, which just 6 per cent of respondents said they would sacrifice in hard times. Meanwhile, eating out is the most likely luxury to be sacrificed – cited by 53 per cent, with holidays and social activities following at 45 per cent and 43 per cent respectively. Some 94 per cent also stated they now expect to only buy items on sale or will look for sale items more.
Paul Hambidge, founder of FDF, said: “The pandemic and multiple lockdowns were the catalyst for a renewed focus on the home, and many people looked to improve their home or re-purpose their living spaces to cater for new multi-functional requirements, such as working or exercising space.
“The results of this survey highlight that despite the cost of living putting a strain on many household budgets, homeowners are reluctant to sacrifice home decoration and improvement. People clearly plan to continue spending the most time in their homes, and during this squeeze on pockets, restaurants and leisure activity providers are going to really feel that knock-on pinch. Key ambitions for many homeowners – which have taken on a new meanings since the pandemic – are making the home comfortable, attractive and fit for their lifestyles. For many, their home is their retreat, and in uncertain or tough times, it really is a sanctuary – as these results illustrate.”
The cost of living induced cut-backs are also impacting the shopping habits of those surveyed: 18 per cent are now likely to only buy reduced items, 75 per cent are comparing costs and looking for sale items more, and 65 per cent are comparing prices from up to three retailers before buying higher value items such as home interiors and furniture, and technology. Almost three quarters (72 per cent) of the all-female survey respondents also claimed that they were much better than their partners at saving money for these kinds of high ticket items.
Hambidge concluded: “The results of this survey certainly echo our experience in terms of an unwavering consumer appetite for home improvement products, multi-functional rooms and heavily discounted products compared with the high street. As an online business with showroom and staff overheads negated, we can beat costs by up to 60 per cent. At a time when consumers are feeling the pinch, savvy shopping is on trend and we’re also seeing a lot of our customers choosing to spread the bill with our lay now, pay later PayPal plan.”
For more details, visit www.factory-direct-flooring.co.uk.
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