The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom and Bathroom Installation (BiKBBI) has called on chancellor Rishi Sunak to kick start local economies by ‘backing tradespeople and independent retailers in the home improvement industry' ahead of next week's budget.
Damian Walters, chief executive of BiKBBI, said: “The chancellor has a chance to kick start local economies in every part of the UK if he backs Britain’s army of hard-working kitchen fitters and the independent showrooms next week. The home improvement industry offers secure, skilled work for people from every walk of life while independent showrooms bring vitality to our high streets. Thanks to this, communities in every part of the UK stand to benefit from the chancellor taking up our recommendations.”
Issuing a three-point plan, which it said will help create jobs in every part of the UK, BiKBBI called on the chancellor to:
• Stimulate the KBB market by encouraging people to invest in their homes with a review on a VAT cut targeted at home improvement products and services;
• Revive the high street with rates relief for independent KBB showrooms that have had to to close their doors while larger trade suppliers remained open;
• Ensure that young people can take up the opportunities of a thriving home improvement industry by investing in skills and vocational training.
BiKBBI added that implementing these recommendations will help the small businesses and tradespeople in the KBB sector recover from some of the challenges they have faced through the pandemic. These have seen installers and retailers invest additional time and money into safe operating procedures to allow them to continue to serve customers, as well as face retail showroom closures and the loss of potential business that entails.
“The government came into office with the promise of ‘levelling up’ economies in every part of the UK and the pandemic has made it more important than ever that they make good on it," said Damian Walters. "By backing KBB tradespeople and independent businesses next week the chancellor will show that he is genuinely committed to helping every community to thrive.”