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  Posted by: electime      3rd February 2022

  • Spending less time in lockdown last year meant over a third loved their homes more than in 2020
  • Pride reflected in increased home improvement spending, with an average £2,706 invested last year
  • Home office improvements dropped by 26 per cent as Brits embraced post-lockdown life and prioritised making over entertaining spaces like kitchens and gardens
  • Checkatrade’s Home Pride Index can be viewed here.

British homeowners spent a collective £40 billion on home improvements in the last 12 months, according to Checkatrade’s latest Home Pride Index.

Despite shortages of skilled trades and raw materials, over a third (37 per cent) of homeowners were more eager than ever to carry out work on their homes, spending an average of £2,706 on home improvements.

Based on the responses of more than 2,000 homeowners, Checkatrade’s second annual Home Pride Index explores how we rekindled our love of the home last year, as we embraced the ability to again use our living spaces as they were originally intended.

We love our homes more now than in 2020

Thanks to fewer months in lockdown, 2021 saw us spend considerably less time at home than in 2020. And it’s clear absence made the heart grow fonder with research from Checkatrade revealing that over a third (35 per cent) of us subsequently loved our homes even more in 2021 vs. 2020.

This renewed love affair is reflected in the money spent sprucing up our most favourite areas of the home with investment in our living rooms seeing the biggest growth, with spend up 20 per cent from 2020

Homeowners also flocked to update their kitchen and garden areas, with investment in these typically-social spaces further suggesting our shift to prioritising spaces we entertain, relax and spend most of our free time in.

Changing Rooms

Meanwhile, although 2020 may have been about creating home office areas, in 2021 homeowners began reclaiming their living spaces from pop-up work or study areas. With many returning to workplaces, home office improvements dropped by 26 per cent in 2021 – a trend Checkatrade expects to see continue throughout 2022.

A nation of DIY-ers

Despite us experiencing more freedoms in 2021, these didn’t seem to deter us from tackling DIY at home. In fact, 30 per cent of homeowners reported fewer unfinished DIY jobs in the last year than in 2020, thanks to having more free time (44 per cent), motivation (30 per cent) and money (21 per cent).

But with this, comes green-eyed envy, as a third of people admitted to being jealous of other people’s home improvements – likely adding to the reasons why we’re investing more in home improvement projects.

House proud cities

And finally, as we look at how house proud we are around the country, homeowners from Oxford, London and Aberystwyth are more house proud than any other area of the UK. Edinburgh, Gloucester, and Portsmouth came bottom of the list – with Edinburgh scoring in the bottom set for the second year running.

On the nation’s renewed love with the home, Mike Fairman, CEO at Checkatrade says, “2020 put a strain on our homes, as we repurposed rooms and pushed their capabilities and robustness to its limits. As we returned to a more ‘normal’ way of living in 2021, it’s not surprising that almost a third of us have re-evaluated the relationship we have with our homes. This has no doubt contributed to why we’re all so loved- up – and we’re expecting this to be reflected with continued and heightened home improvement investment in 2022.’’

To view Checkatrade’s Home Pride Index, visit the Checkatrade blog here.