The kitchen and bath industry registered historic levels of growth with surging demand at the start of the pandemic as more homeowners took on renovation projects while cooped up at home. Early in the pandemic, consumers were willing to wait for delayed products or to pay inflated prices for materials, but now, more are inclined to wait for prices to stabilize in 2022.
As a result, the sector is reporting a weaker outlook in the final months of 2021 with less demand from consumers. Some, however, are keeping kitchen and bath companies busy by stocking up on products rather than facing shortages down the road, and designers are also ordering and testing out new products to finish projects on time.
“In 2021, we saw crazy growth,” says Bill Darcy, CEO of the National Kitchen and Bath Association, a not-for-profit trade organization with over 50,000 members, including manufacturers, remodelers, retailers and other industry specialists. “It was the third highest rate of growth we have seen in the history of the quarterly report. Right now, it is at 12.6%.”
In the face of ongoing issues, the industry remains cautiously optimistic about the health of the sector in 2022, with members giving it a 7.9 out of 10 in the Kitchen & Bath Market Index third-quarter report. Despite projects being pushed into 2022, the industry is continuing to see demand for building and construction projects as 84% of firms report low postponement rates and 90% report low cancellation rates relative to their overall project volume.