Gardeners Prove Resistant to Recession
Homeowners Choosing Emotional Investment Over Financial Gain
Professional gardeners around the UK are reaping the benefits of a recession-busting surge in demand for their expertise, with a 10 per cent increase in the number of homeowners seeking their services and choosing to invest in their gardens as emotional assets to be cultivated, according to RatedPeople.com, the UK’s largest match making service for home improvers and recommended tradesmen.
Despite the recession, nationwide statistics reveal a 9.7per cent increase in the number of requests for gardeners from April 2008 to May 2009, indicating that the British are focussing on transforming their ‘houses’ into ‘homes’ once more, investing in works that will enhance the enjoyment of their property and improve the use of space rather than adding value-driven improvements, such as an extra bedroom or bathroom.
Media reports in recent months have suggested that as a result of the recession, British homeowners are looking to improve the value of their house through internal modifications rather than market forces. However, the evidence from Ratedpeople.com demonstrates that conversely, British consumers are once again seeking to celebrate their emotional attachment to, and enjoyment of, their home, rather than viewing it primarily as a financial investment.
In addition to the 9.7per cent increase in requests for gardeners, requests for window and conservatory specialists have also increased by 44per cent year on year – two improvements that add relatively little financial value to a property, but significant personal value to the homeowner in terms of aesthetics and the feeling of ownership. Moreover, this trend is in direct contrast to a 23.5per cent decline in the need for building services over the last twelve months.
Daniel Johnson of Labyrinths of Albion, an eco-gardener that is highly recommended on RatedPeople.com, commented: "If anything, the recession has made my life easier. Before everyone was focusing on increasing the saleability of their homes and were trying to be property developers, but now people want to stay put and really invest love and attention into their homes instead."
"This means they're not just looking for a quick fix tidy up but want a garden that they can enjoy for years and that will stand the test of time. I've had clients say to me that they want to stay put for 20 years or more so they're actually having their garden designed to their own tastes instead of having to think about what buyers might like."
Andrew Skipwith, CEO of Ratedpeople.com said: "The demand for gardeners has increased significantly in the last twelve months despite the global downturn. With the economic climate making it increasingly difficult for homeowners to move, this has heralded a seismic shift in the way the nation views their homes. It seems that homeowners are re-discovering the emotional bond with their home by looking to maximise the benefits of existing spaces rather than regarding them primarily as investment opportunities."
For more information, please visit www.RatedPeople.com.