Nonetheless, the market has performed relatively well due to several factors, Americans perennially have a lot of stuff that needs organizing and storing, whether in relation to forming new households, downsizing into apartments or condos, remodeling rather attempting to sell or buy in uncertain economic times, or to seasonal factors such as spring cleaning, back to school, winterizing wardrobes, and the holidays.
Up through the financial and housing collapse in 2008, closet and garage organization products were the main drivers of growth, as consumers kept up demand for custom installed closet and garage organization systems. As conditions worsened, demand for these discretionary purchases declined, and consumers shifted to buying less expensive do-it-yourself (DIY) products, or to not purchasing at all.
Consumer are also shifting to more compact housing, according to U.S. Census Bureau data, reversing a longstanding trend. From 1995 to 2007, the median size of new one-family homes grew from 1,920 to 2,277. In the wake of the Great Recession, however, the median size has scaled back to 2,169 sq. ft. Indications are that new homes (as well as garages) will continue this downsizing trend due to economic forces, tightened consumer credit, and sustainability concerns.
“If buying larger homes during boom times meant piling in household goods,” notes Packaged Facts publisher David Sprinkle, “staying in place and smaller homes now mean a sharper need for smart organization.”
While people in all age groups want spaces and goods that reflect their personalities and lifestyles, specific demands typically vary according to lifestage. Millennials may be either moving back home with parents or wading deeper into the market for household furnishings. Gen X consumers are of home-buying age, further advanced in their careers, and have growing families. They may be looking for specific storage solutions in the kitchen or entertainment areas, and for kids’ bedroom and playroom storage products. Baby Boomers have been major drivers of the consumption boom over the last decade. Many are planning to stay in their current homes over the next five to ten years, and are focusing on home retrenchment and re-organization for the longer term. Seniors often need user-friendly, easy-access storage solutions, especially in the wake of downsizing.
In addition, according to Home Organization in the U.S., manufacturers and retailers continue to partner with other brands to enhance consumer appeal, create excitement, and extend into new areas. Most notable in this arena has been Martha Stewart’s deal to market a line of home goods, including closet and other home organization products, exclusively through Home Depot. Such activity has been significant over the last several years, helping to drive market growth in a stalled economy.
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