The UK Moves Underground: A Surge In Structural Waterproofing

4 min

The UK housing market has dominated the media for a long time, property prices having hit an all-time high. In fact, UK houses are currently 31% overvalued, and home ownership in England remains at a 30-year low. 

One industry feeling the benefit is Structural Waterproofing. With more homeowners forced to stay in existing properties unable to afford to move up the housing ladder, the want for extensions - and specifically those underground - has sky rocketed.

The UK Housing Market

House prices in the UK are increasing at an exponential rate. The Office for National Statistics reported an increase of 5.2% in 2017, up £12,000 from December 2016. January of this year saw the rate of increase at its fastest in 10 months, according to Nationwide.

Prices have risen faster than average earnings for the fifth consecutive year. What’s more, increasing prices will continue to be supported by a lack of supply in the market and a clampdown on mortgage lending. All in all, home ownership in England remains at its lowest in 30 years. 

More Home Extensions Than Ever Before

With an increasing number of homeowners barred from climbing the property ladder, the number of people choosing to extend existing properties has soared. Extending through the attic or digging underground to create more space has become the new, viable alternative for people who require more space.

Basements in particular have seen the most rapid growth: Britain showing a 183% increase in planning applications for basement extensions. Previously used as utility spaces or garage-style storage facilities, basement spaces are now being utilised for living areas, undergoing domestic refurbishments to create more family space.

A Positive Impact on the Structural Waterproofing Industry

Any growth to the basement sector means, effectively, growth for the structural waterproofing industry. According to a recent report published by Zion Market Research, the global waterproofing membranes market was valued at USD 18.5 billion in 2016, and is expected to reach USD 31.4 billion by 2022.

Recent years have seen a surge in the demand for waterproofing. Organisations are expanding and the demand for senior level specialists is high, especially those with the relevant experience to see new products and processes through to fruition.

Our Clients: Their Experience

We spoke to one of CSG’s key clients ‘Triton Systems Ltd’, a renowned manufacturer in Structural Waterproofing, to hear how market growth has affected them.

Alan Sleigh, Commercial Manager, Triton Systems Ltd

“The industry has changed significantly during the last 2 years (in fact 4 years really) in a positive way […] Structural waterproofing is increasingly being thought about during earlier design stages (thank goodness!) and not left to a last-minute decision on a project as it was a few years ago.

“Demand for skilled, experienced industry people has increased dramatically […] The ability to absorb, consider best case scenarios, and propose solutions based on understanding of how a building is put together, does not seem easy to find. You really need a holistic approach to structural waterproofing, not just a list of products.

“It’s not easy to find candidates with good strong abilities to be able to provide the level of expertise needed. It’s very easy to spend a lot of time and money on a glitzy updated website saying all the right things that are needed but finding candidates to follow these statements through in a face to face environment, using good communication skills representing your organisation professionally is always a challenge.”

The Need for Strategic Leaders

With high business demand and expanding teams, more and more organisations are creating strategic divisions, employing business directors with a proven history of success who can see that the company successfully grows with the industry. But with a limited talent pool already, finding candidates with the relevant skills and experience able to fill business-critical positions is no easy feat.

CSG has consultants dedicated to executive recruitment within the Structural Waterproofing industry, placing senior-level candidates who can see start-up businesses develop into market leaders.