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USP Marketing Consultancy: Future Building Volumes

The current overall construction volumes are well documented in most countries, but giving a good forecast for the growth of building volumes is much harder. That is one of the reasons why we launched Arch-vision in 2009. We keep track of data like order books from architects, turnovers, GDP, New building Permits and more. At the basis of this prediction model is the early cyclical position that architects have in the construction industry. An increase of their orderbook now, will lead to higher construction volumes in 2-3 years time. Besides building volumes, we also measure important themes like BIM, media orientation, future of prefab and so on. As shown in the picture, the building volumes in Europe will grow 2.3% in 2018 and 1.4% in 2019. A further split is made for Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, The Netherlands and Spain.

Modest Growth

In Italy, there is a modest growth in the order books of architects. Compared to other European countries the confidence still seems fragile, but the growing order books show that the sector has found its road to recovery. Overall the Belgian construction market is quite steady and modest growth which Arch-Vision expects to continue in the coming years: +1% in 2017, +2% in 2018 and 2019.

Architects in France who expect an empty order book in the next twelve months has significantly decreased in the past year. Therefore, we expect an increase of approximately 1% in 2018 and 2019. Also for the UK, the current expected growth regarding the building volumes is 1% in 2019, but this might be different due to the outcomes of the EU Referendum in the UK. The uncertainty in the UK will probably affect the construction sector as well.

High Growth

The forecasts regarding the Dutch construction sector is expected to be the highest in 2019 (+5%). Especially the residential sectors are currently thriving and with a further increase in residential building permits, the future looks bright as well. Poland (4%), Spain (4%) and Germany (3%) will also be responsible for the increase of the construction sector. The positive indicators and the positive sentiment among architects still leads to the prediction that the Polish construction sector will grow.

Regarding the expected growth of 4% in Spain, the order book and turnover development of Spanish architects keep on being positive, which has a positive effect on the rolling barometers. The growth is also higher in Germany, German architects keep reporting growing order books and turnover and very few expect an empty order book in the next twelve months.

All in all, The European construction sector is expected to grow in the following years, but there is some uncertainty regarding the consequences of the Brexit. It will be interesting to see how that will develop the coming years.