The British Institute of KBB Installation (BiKBBI) is urging KBB retailers of all sizes to prepare for a potential change in consumer behaviour by minimising risks associated with installation, and is offering a free, no obligation risk assessment in support.
The BiKBBI says that as the UK embarks on an uncertain 2023, the potential change in shopper habits associated with a financial downturn, could be costly. Retailers will be likely to see a rise in disputes and increases in compensation claims, which will ultimately lead to customers withholding payments. BiKBBI retail officer Emma Bradley, pictured, explains why the stakes are higher in times of recession, and how retailers can mitigate installation risk.
"Many KBB retailers favour offering some form of installation proposition to customers, but even those businesses that are typically mindful of the profitability and reputational risks associated with installation in normal circumstances, should apply greater caution during extraordinary times," she explains.
"The home improvement industry can historically chart the correlation between economic instability and an increase in negative consumer behaviour, especially with products and services associated with long lead times. As an example, buyers enter agreements, in some cases several months in advance of delivery, during which time personal financial circumstances change, which leads to ‘buyer’s remorse’. This can then result in a rise in complaints and claims for compensation, as savvy consumers aim to claw back some of the spend, often seeking legal loopholes or citing contractual breaches. Retailers should not rely on what they’ve always done – we operate in a fast-moving world, with ever-changing legislation, consumer rights and expectations."
The BiKBBI is calling on all retailers operating in the UK KBB sector to review their internal processes and procedures relating to how they manage installation, whether they sell or recommend an installation service. According to the BiKBBI, a comprehensive review should include the current business model versus legislation and the Consumer Rights Act (2015), how compliance is managed, the credentials of those installers they work with or recommend, and any agreements they may have with contractors, employees and their customers.
In what it says is a bid to aid retailers in their due diligence when it comes to installation, BiKBBI has created a 'free, no obligation online risk assessment to help retailers understand the risks associated with installation and check their risk exposure'. The institute is in a Primary Authority Partnership with Trading Standards and is offering the assessment to all KBB retailers, regardless of size, and is open to BiKBBI retail partners and non-partners.