There’s been much made of recent ONS figures which suggest the UK’s economy has stagnated.
Granted, we aren’t enjoying the developmental boom of the 90’s, but I think there are some very encouraging signs that we’re entering into a new and more prosperous period.
There are many regeneration projects going on, some of which Drain Center has been lucky enough to get involved in. I mean, we’ve just witnessed (and most of us contributed to) one of the biggest building projects in the last 50 years – the Olympics.
But it’s in the housing market where I see real potential. The relaxation of planning regulations surrounding Brownfield sites has led to a flurry of new developments - both going up and being planned - all across the UK.
Consumer demand is driving this growth and my colleagues and I are hopeful that the brick and mortar boom will continue well into the New Year and beyond.
It’s interesting how this growth spurt had led to the housing landscape changing too. A condition of new build developments means a certain proportion of the housing stock is allocated for social housing, with many of those homes located at the centre of an estate.
This has had a knock-on effect on how the infrastructure is laid out – it now starts with a central hub and pipe and utilities are installed throughout the estate, whereas before, work began on the outer edges and we gradually worked in – which means more business for us!
Since the government announcement on smart metering, which will see energy suppliers responsible for replacing over 53 million gas and electricity meters, sales in this area have also grown considerably – another way in which the UK housing stock is transforming, bringing with it business benefits to all of us.
I believe that the housing market represents a real bright spot for those working in the construction industry. So as we move into 2013, and with new government initiatives such as Green Deal due to launch, I shall be keeping a close eye in this area as I think there could be new business to be won.
Andy Kenny is key accounts director for Drain Center.