New findings from Palmer Market Research reveal that the conservatory market contracted in 2015 by 6% – hitting an all-time low of just 78,800 units.
With all but 600 units supplied into the home improvement sector, the number of first-time installations also dropped by 9% to 57,000 units.
The new report, however, shows that while the conservatory sector’s share of the new build market and first time installations declined, the home improvement second-time replacement market saw significant growth.
The new report The Market for Domestic Conservatories, published this month [Jan], shows that in contrast to the fortunes of the industry as a whole, the market for second time replacements saw 13% growth in 2015 to 21,200 units.
More significantly, the market for replacement roofs saw growth of 62% to 11,200 units during the same period.
Robert Palmer, Managing Director, Palmer Market Research, said: “Having seen growth of around 3% in 2014, the conservatory market, as a whole, declined by 6% in 2015.
“What is, however, very notable, is the growth that we have seen in the second-time replacement market and the emerging market for replacement roofs in the home improvement sector, with the latter seeing particularly significant growth.”
Figures from Palmer show that PVC-U remains the dominant material type across sectors. The Market for Domestic Conservatories report also suggests that, the fortunes for manufacturers are very much defined by conservatory style.
Although some products, for example Orangeries (26%), saw significant growth in 2015, this was not enough to offset a 4% fall in the home improvement sector overall. This was accompanied by a 1% fall in installed value.
Going forward Palmer suggests that demand for family-style rooms will play a key role in shaping the market as home-owners demand more versatile living spaces.
The findings follow Palmer’s publication of The Window, Door and Conservatory Markets in Housing in Great Britain, last autumn.
This argues that a flattening of the market in 2015 saw total volume fall by 0.7%. This was, however, offset by a shift towards higher-end products and higher value installations, which delivered a 2% increase in installed value to £4.20 billion.
Palmer continued: “Consistent with other areas of the window and door industry, some products are seeing growth, others are going into decline.
“We would suggest that a generation of conservatory-buyers are moving on to their second conservatory purchase are increasingly discerning and expectations and applications are changing as a consequence.”
Palmer concludes: “In what is overall a slowing market this we forecast that this will continue to deliver pockets of significant growth through to 2020.”