The last 18 months have seen the demand for external shading systems (in particular house awnings) skyrocket – a trend that shows no signs of slowing down. A national lockdown paired with some of the best weather the UK has ever experienced has resulted in people spending more time in their gardens and outdoor spaces than ever before.
The warmer weather has also spread across the channel to our neighbouring countries, with research from Copernicus (the European Union's Earth Observation Programme) revealing that Europe is warming up faster than any other continent and at a higher rate (roughly 0.9°C) than the global average.
As temperatures continue to rise and society begins to adjust to the ‘new normal’, outdoor living is certain to remain in full swing, with the increasing popularity of outdoor shading products expected to grow with it.
What is a house awning?
Put simply, a house awning is a retractable fabric canopy that attaches to the side of a property and extends and retracts using spring tensioned folding arms which keep the fabric taut at every position. Typically, motorised operation via a handheld remote control or app on your smartphone allows for maximum control and convenience, while manual operation using a gear box and detachable crank handle provides a more cost-effective solution for those who may only use their awning on an occasional basis.
A recent report carried out by Fact.MR reveals that outside the US, Germany boasts the biggest market for ‘haus awnings’ in Europe, followed closely by the UK and then Italy. According to the report, the retractable awnings industry is projected to continue growing at a consistent rate until 2028, at which point demand for this type of shading will be at its peak.
The benefits of house awnings
House awnings are so popular because not only do they offer additional privacy (particularly in built-up areas) and add a striking new dynamic to any façade, but they serve two main functions essential for a healthy living environment.
Firstly, they provide instant shade from sunlight; both heat and glare (bright light), outstanding UV protection (typically 95% minimum UV block) and shelter from unexpected rain showers. This particular type of shading allows all types of outside spaces to be utilised throughout the seasons – even more so when equipped with additional accessories such as LED lighting and infra-red heating.
Secondly, house awnings provide a much-needed cooling effect to the indoor room adjacent to where they are positioned, both during the summer and winter months. As a result, they ensure a comfortable indoor living space, eliminating any bright light to prevent glare, all whilst filtering damaging UV rays to stop fixtures and furnishings from fading.
Why is the demand for awnings on the rise?
The multiple lockdowns and restrictions enforced on the UK and the rest of Europe since March 2020 have presented many homeowners with the perfect opportunity to renovate or remodel their properties, with research* showing that at the start of summer 2020, 49.2% of Brits planned to invest the money they had saved by not going on holiday to upgrade their garden specifically.
In addition to this, the hospitality sector has been doing all it can to welcome customers back with open arms since the official lifting of lockdown back in July, whilst still adhering to social distancing rules where necessary. With the ability to provide a quick, easy and affordable solution to transform any outdoor space, awnings are not only ideal for residential properties but commercial, too. Both practical and stylish, retractable awnings provide instant shade and shelter and can be designed and built to each application’s exact requirements.
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