The overall impact of the COVID-19 pandemic held steady at 6.5, week-over-week, but the big takeaway this week is that more members — especially designers — said demand for their services is on the upswing.
The weekly member survey measures members’ sentiments about the effects of the COVID-19 crisis on their businesses on a scale of 1 (no impact) to 10 (significant impact).
Among the four member segments, all groups’ rating remained under 6.9. Building and construction pros’ were the only group who said the impact was greater this week compared to the June 4 survey, rating it at 6.8 from 6.2. Last week, however, their rating fell a full point, so it’s possible that an initial surge of business after many states started reopening eased slightly this week.
Designers said the shutdown’s impact fell by 0.2 to 6.5; manufacturers reported no change, at 6.3, and retailers’ rating edged down by 0.1 to 6.6.
NKBA asks members two questions each week to measure the impact of the pandemic and resulting lockdown on their businesses, and whether demand for their goods and services is increasing, decreasing or staying the same.
There was encouraging news about demand. Overall, 48% of respondents said demand was increasing, up 9 percentage points from last week. Just 11% said demand was falling, down 6 points.
Designers showed a 12-point bump, with 43% reporting demand on the rise and 18% saying demand was decreasing, a 2-point dip.
Manufacturers and builders each broke the 50% mark, with 51% of manufacturers and 52% of builders reporting increased demand. Each of these reflected a 7-point hike. Retailers who said demand was on the upswing rose by 5 percentage points, to 47%.
It’s reasonable to assume that as economies in more areas begin to open up, more business will begin to return as well. Remodelers are increasingly being permitted to return to in-home job sites, and designers are being enlisted to evaluate remodeling projects as states reduce restrictions.
The percentage of respondents who said demand was falling was under 20% for all segments — the first time this has occurred since the NKBA Pulse began in mid-April, when the overall percentage of members saying demand was off was a whopping 62%. This week, the overall percentage who said demand was down was 11%, falling by 6 percentage points. The group with the biggest drop (15 points) was manufacturers, just 6% of whom said demand was decreasing, while retailers were down 10 points to 5%.