COVID-19 Contractor Research Insights
We are now one year into tracking Contractor activity during COVID and are able to look at year-over-year comparisons.
March is the best news yet for no project delays or cancellations due to COVID. 63% reported such delays vs 86% last March.
However, causes of those delays remains constant with health concerns and homeowner financial concerns leading the way.
The trend continues of fewer Contractors saying delays will last ‘More than 3 months’ and more contractors are now saying delays will be ‘Less than a month’.
Online purchases appear to be sticking and both online deliver and online in-store pickup are higher this March over last March, while the percent of Contractors buying in-store is identical YOY. Larger contracting firms continue to be more engaged with online purchases.
Project request are much better in March 2021 with 32% saying their requests are higher than normal. Compare that to only 11% in March last year. This metric has been trending up for both small and large firms and is an indicator of future activity.
Two thirds of Contractors believe COVID is the reason for increased project requests. The reason? Homeowners are at home and available.
Project closure rates are also up over last year with 29% reporting higher close rates than normal, vs only 17% in March 2020. This metric is also seen in the Farnsworth Contractor Index and is another predictor for positive future contractor activity.
Despite positive movement, concerns about COVID among Contractors remain.
Like DIYers, the % of Contractors receiving vaccines is increasing, but not as quickly as DIYers. 15% of contractors reported having received a vaccine with 55% planning to get it when it’s available to them. Larger firms and firms in the West and Northeast see higher percentages receiving and planning to receive the vaccine.
Additional 2021 Survey Questions
Given the impact COVID-19 Vaccines may have on market behavior, we will now track Contractor responses to questions about vaccines. In January, roughly 90% have not received any vaccine, with larger firms seeing higher vaccination rates. Over 25% said they are not likely to get a vaccine even when it’s available to them.