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Posted in Minoli
14th February 2022
Working closely with a diverse client base in construction, property development, automotive retail and hospitality, we have a good sense of the immediate, mid-term and more strategic challenges and opportunities for the sector.
The breadth and depth of issues that businesses need to prepare for, comply with, work around or mitigate are far-reaching. Be they related to the economy, legislation, trade, transport, supply chain, manpower, regulation or consumer behaviour, there’s no single roadmap to help firms large and small navigate safe passage.
Our sense, echoed by the media, is that we’re tentatively turning a corner. There’s no denying that there are still challenges ahead, but most would say the hazards are at least more predictable.
Looking forwards, on the positive side, industry bodies, analysts and business leaders seem to concur that we will see:
- Growth in private residential project starts in 2022 and ‘23 and an increase in the number and value of planning approvals, although somewhat moderated by pressure on household earnings and inflation
- A strong market for new build housing, buoyed by continued economic recovery and a high proportion and availability of fixed rate mortgages
- A rebound and resurgence in investor confidence for Hospitality and Leisure sectors leading to a surge in new starts for this year and next
- Continued Government focus on the ‘levelling-up‘ agenda, regional regeneration and social housing, as well as opportunities for change-of-use from retail to residential under new Permitted Development Rights (PDR)
- A general sense of ambition from homeowners and buyers of existing properties to improve their living quarters and work-from-home facilities, reduce their energy consumption and carbon footprint, and to invest in achieving a better work / life balance by moving away from cities to more rural areas.
So that’s all good but, we must also heed warnings that the following issues still need to be monitored and managed:
- Brexit uncertainty and the impact of the pandemic may continue to cause import delays, additional transport costs and a scarcity of trades and labour for some time to come
- Whilst the construction materials shortage is easing, the soaring cost of electricity and gas could lead to rising costs for key commodities such as concrete, steel, cement and roofing products
- There’s a need to fully understand the implications of the Future Home Standards and upskill manpower in some of the more technical aspects of degasification and electrification
- There may be a dip in housing demand as buyers and builders come to terms with the end of ‘Help To Buy’ and the start of HBF’s ‘Deposit Unlock’ 5% scheme and other support products
- The construction industry will be a key driver of economic recovery but within that we see a continued decrease in the number of SME building firms, who are much more sensitive to these challenges, especially delays in planning approval and discharge, rising materials costs and labour shortages
- We are yet to see the full impact of the pandemic on home buyers’ behaviour and whilst most indicators are optimistic, the British public can be a fickle bunch.
Now, we at Minoli know we are but a small cog in this big machine, but if we can be ready to help you grasp just some of the opportunities and make sure tile supply is not on your list of problems, then that’s the very least you can expect from us. In fact, in support of those clients we already serve, we go a whole lot further:
- We keep all our most frequently specified ranges in plentiful UK stock at our Oxford distribution centre, with warehouse capacity that exceeds 32,000 ft2 containing £3 million in net cost value stock
- We have dedicated account managers for all our corporate and professional clients, offering an attentive and expert service that’s considered second to none
- We have excellent and longstanding relationships throughout our supply chain, which helps us to minimise any associated disruption to our customers, and in turn theirs
- We maintain open dialogue with our production plants and clients to keep everyone as best informed as possible regarding availability and delivery
- We run our own vehicle fleet with Minoli employed drivers, which currently comprises 12 DAF trucks, with two more in build for Q3, and a further eight supporting vehicles, giving a daily delivery capacity of over 100,000 Kgs.
Having a sense of the challenges our housebuilder, developer and professional clients face helps us be better prepared to meet their needs.
We may not yet be able to see around corners but we’re as best prepared as can be for what we predict might be around them, and well placed to field any curve balls that come round the bend.