Summer surge for home improvements

The UK is set for a surge in home improvements as spring and summer arrive.

Such is the opinion of Homebuilding and Renovating Magazine editor Jason Orme, who explained he was surprised to hear of a drop in sales for Home Retail Group, owner of Homebase.

A 5.5 per cent reduction in the first two months of 2009 may suggest that the UK is becoming more prudent about its investment in home improvement, but Mr Orme believes it is only a matter of time before things change.

"With people not moving so much, you expect them to be willing to spend a bit more money on their house," he said.

"The weather (in January and February) was particularly bad, which is one reason why people arent thinking about going out or even spending money generally."

He added that he expects an improvement in the weather to go hand in hand with an upsurge in home improvements.

With Sainsburys reporting that Brits took out over £4 billion worth of loans to cover home improvements such as conservatories or bespoke kitchen extensions in 2008, it would seem that homeowners are still looking to improve.

Conversely, 424,000 loans were taken out – an increase of 24 per cent on the previous years figures.