An improving housing market, and hopes of a better economy, seems to be motivating consumers back into home remodeling, with cabinet sales seeing a strong double digit increase at the beginning of 2013.
Do an internet search on home sales, and one can see a significant turnaround from the bad news we had become accustomed to over the past several years. Now it seems the same could be said about the cabinetry business, with recent stats showing double digit improvements, year over year, for the first 2 months of 2013. Even CEO’s from major cabinet brands are seeing a significant uptick in business driven by new home construction and an improving home remodeling market.
According to Tom O’Grady, one of the head guys at National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI), “Homeowners are tired of waiting to make improvements—many have chosen to stay put—and better financial positioning has them actively approaching professionals to get work done and enhance long-term livability of the home.”
Tom O’Grady made the mention when NARI stated in its first-quarter Remodeling Business Pulse (RBP), overall current business conditions have seen steady increases since March of 2012. In the press release, he also went on to say, “Remodelers nationwide are not only experiencing increased activity right now, but many have a backlog of projects well into the fall”
In addition to this, the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association (KCMA) said members of its monthly Trend of Business Survey reported cabinet sales for February 2013 increased +14.1 percent compared to sales for February 2012, year-to-date sales show an increase of +15.7 percent. This is a stellar improvement from the prior year, where by May 2012, year-to-date sales showed a dismal increase of +2.7 percent from the previous year. All eyes will be on a continued improvement in housing and the overall economy to support not the cabinetry markets, but home improvement overall.
But although consumers are now stepping back into the home improvement market, no industry professional can lose sight of the fact that it’s not the same market we experienced a decade ago when the real estate bubble was building and folks we’re using second mortgages to fund major products. After an economic turmoil like the one we’re trying to pull out of, many people are minding their wallets and competitive pricing will be at the front lines of most decisions. One can also expect customers to trend to more affordable solutions. According to the February data from (KCMA), year-to-date sales showed that stock sales up +23.1 percent, semi-custom sales up +8.7 percent, and custom sales up +14.5 percent.