Sales tracker: Merchant sales in October

Kitchen and bathroom sales to builders, contractors and installers were subdued

01 Feb, 19

Builders’ Merchant Building Index reports home improvement figures for October to builders, contractors and kitchen and bathroom installers

Sales tracker: October

According to the Builders’ Merchant Building Index, October was the best sales month for home improvement sales, despite a prediction of a tighter market. However kitchens and bathrooms were subdued.

Total builders merchants value sales to builders, contractors and kitchen and bathroom installers in October 2018 were the highest of any month since the start of the BMBI sate in July 2014.

Sales were helped by October having 22 trading days {most months have 20-22) and were up 6.8% compared with October 2017.

Eleven of the 12 categories sold more, led by Timber & Joinery Products (+10.3%), which also had its best-ever month.

Although growing more slowly, Heavy Building Materials (+5.3%), Tools (+3.4%) and Ironmongery (+2/3%) also had their month.

Kitchens & Bathrooms (+1.9%) was more subdued and had the smallest year-on-year increase.

Kitchens and Bathrooms faltering

Overall, October sales were 11.4% higher than September, helped by two additional trading days.

Plumbing, Heating & Electrical (+17.2%), Workwear & Safetywear (14.9%) and Heavy Building Materials (12.4%) were among eight categories that did better. However, Kitchens & Bathrooms (+8.4%) grew more slowly.

Average sales a day for October were 1.3% higher than September.

10 of the 12 categories sold more but Kitchens & Bathrooms News (-1.4%) and seasonal landscaping (-6.7%) sold less.

The 10 months January to October 2018 were 4.3% ahead of the same period in 2017.

Plumbing, Heating & Electrical was strongest (+8.3%) with Timber & Joinery Products (+7.6%) close behind. The Kitchens & Bathrooms category (+3.7%) was off the pace.

October’s BMBI Index was 131.8, with one additional trading day.

Plumbing, Heating & Electrical  was top (141.1), with Kitchens & Bathrooms  (122.5) coming in second lowest.

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