Sales to builders and contractors by Britain’s builders’ merchants surged in September, with sales up 8.3% compared with September 2019, according to the latest Builders Merchants Building Index (BMBI) report. Landscaping was the strongest category over the period ( up 31.2%), albeit with one extra trading day.  


Total builders merchants value sales in Q3 2020 increased by 1% compared to Q3 2019. Landscaping sales were up 24.2% – the highest level since the index was set up in 2015, with its Q3 performance driven by decking, garden walling/paving and fencing and gates. Timber and joinery sales increased 3.5% over the same period.


Total value sales in Q3 2020 were significantly up on the previous quarter (+63.2%) when many merchants were closed. All product categories reported strong growth, with timber and joinery up 71%.


Sales across all categories improved in September compared to August, with total builders merchants up 13.7%. The two largest categories – heavy building materials and timber and joinery products – were up 15.4% and 15.6% respectively.


August’s BMBI index was 124.6. Landscaping (175.5) was strongest, followed by timber and joinery products (133.4).

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The Builders Merchant Building Index (BMBI)

The BMBI is a brand of the BMF. The BMBI report, which is produced and managed by MRA Marketing, uses GfK’s Builders Merchant Point of Sale Tracking Data which analyses sales out data from over 80% of generalist builders’ merchants’ sales across Great Britain. The full report is on