The British Removal Business - Growth or Rough Times Ahead
It would seem that the removals business has seen a revival in recent years. This is especially true for Europe, but the trend is not exclusive to the continent. It would appear that the lighter visa regime and the decrease in travel and immigration restrictions have ushered in an age of migration in multiple directions - within the EU and outside of it, crossing country and continent borders and exploring a world of opportunities. It would seem that not only travelers are benefiting from this. Homeowners are now more ready than ever to sell, pack up and leave home in search of better fortune. People are willing to reestablish themselves in a new location and this warrants more large scale relocations than ever before.
This is backed up by statistics. Statistics from the British Association of Removers or (BAR for short) show a definite increase in the number of removal jobs over the past few years. While the business of removals within Britain saw only a modest two percent increase between 2009 and 2010, in 2011 the growth was much more pronounced - an impressive 12%. The growth for moves across Europe was less pronounced, but still significant - a steady 5.5% growth was witnessed in the business of removals across Europe. This wouldn't normally be a surprising amount of growth, but it is interesting to witness in an age of recession and restricted financial opportunities for many. There can be a lot of speculation on the origin of this phenomenon, but probably the most important factor is, indirectly, the recession itself. The lack of permanent employment may be driving many out of Great Britain in search of "greener pastures" so to speak. And while this may not be healthy for the economy overall, it does provide a healthy boost to the removals business.
A domestic move is much easier to execute without the help of a removals company (difficult but not impossible), compared to an international move which is impossible without professional help. This is why it is a bit odd that the domestic trade has seen a much more pronounced elevation in comparison to the area of international removals. However, taking into account the fact that uprooting and moving to another country still is and will probably remain a very big and difficult decision, this trend seems to make more sense.
In unison with BAR's numbers, international movers are reporting an increase in traffic, particularly to Australia and New Zealand. This could be due to many factors, notably the similarities in culture and language, the better economic prospects and, not least of all, the warmer climate.
However, it isn't all good news. Another consequence of the recession is the increase of costs - for fuel, equipment and the like. Additionally, the greater traffic through customs means larger import fees for removers, which leads to a decrease in profit margins. The RHA (Road Haulage Association ) in Britain has reported similar findings. This is likely to affect the final consumer and, more often than not, significantly increase the overall cost of a move. However, it is common knowledge that a permanent relocation constitutes a hefty investment. It is up to the customer to decide whether it's worth it and it would seem that after weighing the costs and benefits, more people than ever are deciding that a permanent change of residence is right for them.