Survey Shows Dealers Bullish on Market, Buying
Consumer spending on kitchen and bath remodeling, still
generally strong and resilient in the face of lingering economic
and global uncertainties, should continue to hold up, and even
improve, over the next 12 months.
At the same time, however, homeowners are apparently expressing
an increased sensitivity to kitchen/bath remodeling prices a
signal, perhaps, that consumer confidence has not risen to the same
level as consumers’ desire to remodel their existing home or
purchase a new one.
That’s the view of a sampling of kitchen/bath dealers and
designers who participated in a recent survey by Kitchen & Bath
Design News. The nationwide survey conducted in the second quarter
of 2003 by the Cedarhurst, NY-based research firm, The Wayman
Group, Inc. drew responses from nearly 250 kitchen/bath dealers and
The K&BDN-Wayman Group survey revealed that dealers and
designers are generally bullish about current and future market
conditions. At the same time, surveyed specifiers indicate that
they intend to remain active product purchasers, and have no plans
to cut back on existing showroom space or kitchen/bath
Among the major findings of the survey are the following:
More than half of the dealers and designers surveyed indicate that
they expect current market conditions to improve over the next 12
months; in contrast, only 8% believe market conditions will
deteriorate, while 39% say they expect conditions to remain about
the same (see Graph 1).
More than half (58%) of those surveyed indicate that the impact
of current market conditions will have no impact on their product
buying plans. In fact, more than one-third (34%) report they will
increase their buying activity, while only 8% say they will cut
back on product purchases (see Graph 2).
Nearly half of the kitchen and bath dealers and designers
surveyed by K&BDN (44%) plan to add to or completely change the
product lines they currently specify within the next 12 months (see
Graph 3, Page 34). They plan to add or change an average of 7.0
products and/or services, covering literally the entire gamut of
kitchen and bath product categories. For example, two-thirds (67%)
indicate they will add or change kitchen cabinets, while over
one-half have plans to add or change bathroom vanities (54%) and
countertop surfacing materials (52%).
Of those respondents who have showrooms, an average of about
1,720 sq. ft. is devoted to kitchen displays, and about 540 sq. ft.
is devoted to bathroom displays. One-third (33%) of the dealers and
designers surveyed say they plan to expand their showroom space
over the next 12 months, while only 1% report they plan to decrease
their space. Two-thirds (66%) say they plan to keep their showroom
the same size as now.
Of those dealers and designers who currently do not have a
showroom, 12% say they plan to add one within the next 12
Some 51% of the dealers/designers surveyed said that price is more
important to their customers now than it was three years ago, prior
to 9/11 and when the economy was in much better shape (see Graph 4,
Page 34). By comparison, only 9% said price was less important now,
while 40% osaid that price is just as important to customers now as
it was three years ago.