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Garden retailing to feel impact of decline in home ownership

A new report has identified how a fall in home ownership for the under 35s will impact the horticulture retail market in years to come.

The Horticulture Trade Association’s latest Garden Market Retail Analysis report shows that the market was slightly down in 2013 with plant sales hardest hit due to the very cold March and April weather.

However, the report identifies that round 1.5 million fewer people now claim to have a garden or allotment now than in 2007, with around 40% of this fall attributable to changes in Greater London. It also reveals that renters tend to spend around 55% of the amount that home owners do on gardens.

With the fall in home ownership very significant among the under 35s, the report estimates that spending among 35 to 64 year olds in ten years time will equate to approximately 2% of market value, rising to approximately 6% of market value in 20 years.

Horticulture Trade Association chief executive Carol Paris said: “Given that per capita spend on gardens tends to be higher in some countries on the continent where home ownership is low, this is as much as opportunity as a threat at this stage to engage renting households in their gardens.

“Easy and portable solutions that enable people to take their garden with them when they move are going to become even more important as we encourage younger gardeners to enjoy their outdoor space. Future building polices and developments such as the Garden City initiative will also provide further potential opportunities if the wide benefits of plants and gardens to society and the the environment are taken into account.”

The report also suggests that there may be opportunities to provide more products and services for older consumers who began gardening in the late eighties and early nineties when there was a gardening boom led by TV programmes such as Ground Force. It said: “As these consumers continue to enjoy gardening, opportunities may emerge for providing products and services to enable them to continue to enjoy gardening into old age.”

Source : The Retail Bulletin

01 September 2014
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