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Huge demand but a lack of supplies – what is driving rising house prices

NerdWallet Mortgages House price growth

2020 saw a huge rise in demand for the housing market. The after effects of the first UK lockdown, coupled with the government’s Stamp Duty holiday, had thousands of buyers clamouring for new homes in desirable locations.

This inevitably led to a sharp rise in the cost of housing. With more demand than expected, sellers were able to raise their asking prices and draw buyers into lengthy bidding wars for their dream properties.

Now the Stamp Duty holiday has ended, and the UK is almost entirely out of Covid-19 restrictions, many new homeowners are turning their attention to renovating their new properties.

But with demand high and imports affected by Brexit, building supplies shortages are threatening to raise prices and hamper the renovation dreams of many.

We take a look at some of the key supplies that are in high demand right now and why they’re essential for building work.


Concrete is an essential part of building a house. From binding brickwork together to laying driveways and patios.

Almost every building renovation project will need to use concrete in some form or another to get the job done.


For extensions and conversions, it is likely that steel will need to be used to reinforce the structural integrity of these types of renovations.

Steel is strong and is more resistant to natural elements that can affect wood etc. This makes them ideal for building projects that last.

Roof membranes

Roofs need to be watertight as a bare minimum. To achieve water proofing, roofers will use roof membranes to ensure no ingresses of water occur and damage a home over time.

With record rainfall hitting parts of the UK this year, roof membranes are an extremely essential part of any building renovation work. Especially homes.


Wood is still used ubiquitously in the building and home renovation industry. From garden studios to loft conversions, the lightweight, flexible and strong properties of wood make it desirable for a range of renovation projects.

With more focus on sustainability, sourcing the right wood from FSC certified suppliers is becoming important to a new generation of homeowners.


Gravel, stone, sand and geosynthetic aggregates are still commonly used in a wide variety of different home renovation projects such as garden and driveway landscaping.

With any luck, as the world opens again and trade uncertainty abates, supplies will be rushing in once more and the home renovations people desperately want will be completed sooner rather than later.