The Kingfisher European Home Report 2012 provides a unique snapshot of the way Europeans view their homes and their attitudes to home improvement. We surveyed over 15,000 people across eight countries in Europe and what is clear is that the home is one of the most important elements in people's lives.
As part of our ‘Creating the Leader’ strategy we want to ensure that we know more about the European home than anyone else. This report is part of that, and we have concentrated on the countries in which we trade, namely the UK & Ireland, France, Poland, Russia, Spain, Turkey and Germany. The research revealed four key themes about how consumers across Europe are using their homes and about their attitudes to home improvement, and highlighted some interesting differences and similarities between the markets surveyed. The findings confirmed some of our long-held views and surprised us in other areas. We hope you find the report equally thought-provoking.
“Home is where the heart is”
Homeowners right across Europe enjoy improving their homes. They prioritise spending money on them and are doing so to improve the quality of their lives at home, rather than to increase the value of the property. In short, in an age of economic uncertainty, the research shows that home really is where the heart is.
Everybody's doing it
Nine out of 10 Europeans are spending money improving their homes, with nearly three quarters doing the jobs themselves. About a third of consumers undertake Do-It-Yourself tasks at least once a month, with one in 10 of these falling into the category of “weekend warriors” who carry out jobs in their homes on a weekly basis.
The internet: part of the toolkit
The internet is used extensively when undertaking home improvement jobs, but mainly for research, comparing prices and seeking advice, rather than making purchases. Two-thirds of home improvers use the internet to research products and make price comparisons and half of them use it to find information about how to improve the home.
Eco is going mainstream
Making homes eco-friendly is an increasingly important factor for consumers across Europe, with 32% saying it is “very important” to them. A further 48% say it is “fairly important”, with the most popular eco-investments being energy-efficient installations. While the issue is firmly on the agenda across Europe, interest appears greatest in rapidly developing countries.
Country by country data
The research highlighted some interesting differences and similarities between the markets surveyed. These are accompanied by macro-economic indicators for these countries.