UK Homewares Sector Report summary
February 2021Period covered: Period covered: 01 Jan 2021 – 31 Jan 2021
Note: Reporting periods are either one month or two months behind the current month as standard.
Lockdown hits Homewares
- Homewares sales fell by 6.3% year-on-year in January.
- Online sales of household goods surged by 113% year-on-year in January.
- While the latest lockdown weighs on the sector, homewares demand has generally held up well during the pandemic. Consumers are prioritising home-related purchases as they spend more time at home.
UK Retail Market Trends
- The announcement of a third national lockdown on 4 January, effective the following day, saw the closure of non-essential retailers once more.
- A rapid rise in the number of cases caused by the newly identified Covid-19 strain caused anxiety amongst some shoppers.
- Retail sales fell by 1.7% year-on-year in January, according to the Retail Economics (value, non-seasonally adjusted, ex. Fuel).
- However, there was a significant shift towards online as consumers reverted seamlessly to lockdown shopping behaviour.
Housing Market Losing Steam
- The housing market is starting to lose momentum, as the deadline for the Stamp Duty holiday nears.
- January’s RICS Residential Market Survey shows a clear reversal in market activity, with indicators for enquiries, agreed sales and new instructions all turning negative for the first time since May 2020.
- The government is considering a short extension to the holiday to allow more time for deals to be completed. This would provide upside support to homewares sales in the months ahead as consumers purchase furnishings for new homes.
Homewares under pressure again after seven months of growthSource: Retail Economics