- 29% of Brits are too scared to change something in their home in case they make the wrong decision
- More than one in 10 have spent extra money making further changes to their homes
- 40% of consumers have returned products because they didn’t look the same once they got them home
Nearly one in five consumers in the UK have made a change to their home in the past 12 months, only to regret their design decisions, according to new research.
Endless arrays of floor and wall coverings, countless furniture styles and colours, coupled with an inability to visualise how finished projects will look, are leaving millions of befuddled Brits second guessing home décor changes.
Others (29%) are so scared of making a bad choice they are avoiding making any decision at all.
And more than one in 10 have regretted a disastrous design decision so much that they have spent more money making further changes to cover-up their mistake.
The findings are part of a report commissioned by Manchester tech start-up DigitalBridge investigating the impact of the “imagination gap” – which occurs when consumers delay purchases because they can’t imagine what products will look like in their own home.
The report highlighted the level of decorator’s remorse among homeowners, with nearly one in five revealing they had made some kind of home-décor change that looked entirely different to how they imagined.
It also revealed a commercial challenge for retailers that are being forced to deal with extra costs and delays dealing with returns from indecisive consumers.
Of those who took part in the survey, 40% said they had returned products that didn’t look how they imagined when placed in a room, while more than a third of consumers admitted to returning products because they “didn’t look right” in the allotted space.
And more than half of consumers said they had decided against buying new furniture, wallpaper or paint just because they couldn’t imagine what it would look like in their home.
Worryingly for retailers the items consumers are most likely to return or put off buying altogether – furniture, wallpaper and paint – are the same products consumers say they are most likely to consider buying in the next 12 months.
Nearly a quarter (23%) of people also said they have put off buying new floor coverings while almost a third (29%) said they had decided against buying items like curtains or cushions.
Commenting on the report’s findings DigitalBridge CEO David Levine said: “Making changes to a home is a major decision that can be costly and time-consuming. Being left feeling like you have made a mistake can be devastating, particularly if you then spend extra time and money making further changes.
“In the past, this problem was something retailers were unable to help customers overcome, but new technology and developments in virtual, augmented and mixed reality platforms are making it possible for homeowners to preview changes before spending any money.
“This report also highlights a serious commercial challenge for retailers with consumers admitting to putting off, or deciding against, making purchases because they can’t imagine what items will look like when they get home.
“Considering the size of the UK’s home décor market that is potentially millions that retailers are missing out on.
“Consumers have often wished they had an undo button for their poor choices, and now technology has given them one.”
You can read DigitalBridge’s report: “The Imagination Gap – Retail’s £1bn problem” here