Through the roof: Home improvement prices on the rise as timber spikes 80pc

Rob Scott of Cabins Unlimited (inset) with one of his timber buildings. Pictures: Rob Scott

Rob Scott of Cabins Unlimited (inset) with one of his timber buildings. Pictures: Rob Scott - Credit: Rob Scott

The price of home improvements has spiked by as much as 80pc as raw material costs continue to soar as a result of Brexit and increased demand. 

Customers looking to buy everything from bespoke staircases to wooden cabins could see increases in prices and lead times - though Norfolk businesses are doing all they can to absorb the additional charges instead of passing them on. 

Greg Aldridge is one of the directors of Attleborough's Easton Joinery, which is part of a group that also runs Norfolk Timberyard and the Norfolk Fence Company, meaning every aspect of his business has been impacted by hikes in costs. 

Head of framing Luke Brown with director Greg Aldridge

(L-R) Easton Joinery head of framing Luke Brown with director Greg Aldridge - Credit: Easton Joinery

"It's a combination of the fact that Brexit pushed prices up - one of our suppliers in France has just told us they can't supply us anymore - and the fact that everyone is buying timber-related products," he said. 

"People have been on furlough, they can't go on holiday, so they're spending the money on their homes. We've also seen prices outside the EU hike to the same level because of demand.

Bespoke timber work from Easton Joinery

Bespoke timber work from Easton Joinery - Credit: Easton Joinery

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"We've had jobs which we quoted for £600 and then in the amount of time it takes for the materials to come through it actually costs £1,000. That's a cost we've managed to absorb ourselves because we're lucky in that we have a lot of timber stock." 

A timber building from Dereham-based Cabins Unlimited has increased in price from anywhere between £600 and £1,000 since December alone, said director Rob Scott. 

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"It's difficult because our margins are squeezed more than ever so there are some costs we have to pass on because the materials we use are just skyrocketing so fast," he added. 

"I think what's difficult is that British customers in general have got used to click and collect on Amazon and don't realise how many issues there still are in the global supply chain. 

"It's not an issue in the short term, our order books have never been more full which is of course welcome, the main challenge is just explaining why lead times are a bit longer."

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