A growing number of tradespeople are experiencing homeowners wanting to purchase their own building materials for property improvement projects, according to new research. Nearly half (48%) of tradespeople that were interviewed for the Jewson Trade Trends 2023 report agreed that homeowners are now more likely to want to buy at least some materials and supplies themselves – up from 40% in 2022.
However, only 5% of tradespeople are in favour of homeowners buying all the materials for their project. The majority (79%) of tradespeople said they prefer to buy their own and 16% said they wanted to buy at least some of the materials themselves.
Karl Nicholson, founder of K Design and Build, said: “We won’t work on projects unless we’re able to source and buy the materials ourselves as we want to make sure that they’re the right specification and quality. Consumers who want to get their own materials are often very price conscious so will be looking for the cheapest way of carrying out their projects. However, this means that they can’t necessarily guarantee the quality.”
Simon White, founder of White Space Construction, said: “On the whole, our customers still expect us to purchase materials as they know we’ll be able to get better prices than they can. In the few instances when customers want to buy their own products, I tell them that although we’ll guarantee the fit and installation, we can’t guarantee the products themselves because we’ve not sourced them.”
Commenting on the findings, Lisa Young, commercial director at Jewson, said: “It can be a divisive question – should homeowners bypass tradespeople to buy materials themselves? Some homeowners may want to see materials in person and have control of what they’re spending, and price fluctuations might also lead to them wanting to research the best costs. However, often homeowners don’t have access to the choice, quality and prices that ttradespeople do. Some of our customers have also voiced frustrations that homeowners might not order materials and products that are as readily available, leading to delays on site.”