Canvassing the Aquatics Industry

The number of respondents with an income between $50,000 and $59,999 increased by nine per cent in 2013, while the $60,000 plus bracket continued to fall. On the bright side, 33 per cent of respondents received a raise between one and five per cent.

In conducting our fifth annual salary survey, Pool & Spa Marketing again asked its readers—swimming pool/hot tub designers, builders, retailers, service professionals, and product representatives, along with landscape architects, distributors and manufacturers—to anonymously provide invaluable information on the status of their employment in the aquatics industry. The salary survey was conducted in the fourth quarter of 2013 and the results are based on a record number of responses.

As has been the case since our first industry census in 2009, more than half of the respondents were based in Ontario; British Columbia, Alberta, and Atlantic Canada round out the top four regions.

In analyzing the results, it seems as though the aquatics industry is maturing as more than three quarters of the responses came from those aged 40 and up and are either owners and/or are in managerial positions. Another interesting statistic, which has continued since last year’s survey, shows women are becoming more involved in what has generally been a male dominated industry, with the number of female respondents increasing by 12 per cent over 2013.

In terms of hours worked and annual salaries, the majority of respondents are working 41 to 51 hour weeks; however, those working typical hours (between 35 and 40) were up by 10 per cent. Although the number of respondents with salaries between $30,000 and $49,999 increased last year, this income bracket stalled in 2013, while those earning base salaries ($20,000 to $29,000) increased by five percent. Further, respondents with an income between $50,000 and $59,999 increased by nine per cent, while the $60,000 plus bracket continued to fall as last year’s survey revealed. On the bright side, 33 per cent of respondents received a raise between one and five per cent.

Read the full article: Salary Survey

State of the Industry: What’s in Store for 2014?

Compiled by Jason Cramp

Despite the challenges faced during the 2013 season, for the most part, the state of the industry not only lies in the hands of the consumer, but also Mother Nature. Numerous homeowners would be interested in owning a complete backyard retreat; they just need to be sold on the idea, instead of buying an RV or going on a resort vacation. According to the Conference Board of Canada, consumer confidence increased in February to 85.7 (almost five points higher than last year), and although they are showing concern for their current financial situation, they view the future with more optimism and feel things will get better going forward.

Read the full article: Market Report

State of the Industry: Regional Activity

Compiled by Jason Cramp

With more than half of Canada’s population residing in either Ontario or Quebec, it would only stand to reason why these two provinces continue to be the largest regions for swimming pool installations. Together, they represent 67 per cent of the Canadian market; however, their combined market share dropped approximately three per cent in comparison to 2012 due to the fact some of each province’s largest urban centres experienced some of the biggest permit decreases year-over-year.

Although pool sales in western Canada increased by seven per cent in 2012, this was wiped out in 2013 with a 16.5 per cent drop in registered pool permits.

Read the full article: Market Report

State of the Industry: Weathering the Storm

Numerous homeowners would be interested in owning a complete backyard retreat; they just need to be sold on the idea. Photo courtesy Pool Craft

Compiled by Jason Cramp

Nothing affects the success of the swimming pool industry more than the weather. For instance, builders can pre-sell their pool installations well in advance, but if the ground is still frozen and the conditions are not conducive to excavation and/or construction, then pools are not going into the ground. Further, if the spring is cool and wet, or there is an extended winter—like what has been experienced this year—consumers do not necessarily have swimming pools on the their mind.

That said, Environment Canada reported spring 2012 nationwide as the ninth warmest on record (1.6 degrees above average), last spring was the 25th warmest (0.6 degrees above average). Despite this one-degree temperature change, 256 more permits where registered last spring (March, April and May) compared to the same period in 2012.

Read the full article: Market Report

State of the Industry: What did this mean for pool sales?

Although consumers may be showing concern for their current financial situation, they view the future with some optimism. Photo courtesy Betz Pools Ltd.

Compiled by Jason Cramp

In comparison to the strong start of the 2012 season, last year swimming pool building permit registrations decreased in the first quarter by 10.3 per cent, from 1054 permits in 2012 to 945 in 2013. The season gained back some ground in the second quarter with a 3.5 per cent increase over the same period in 2012; however, it was the third and fourth quarters which dealt the pool industry its final blow. Pool permit registrations decreased over this period by 12.2 per cent; almost 600 less permits were issued between the months of July and December in 2013 compared to 2012.

Overall, 12,052 pool permits were issued in 2013, which was down from 12,517 permits in 2012, representing a 3.7 per cent decrease for the year. Permit registrations in census metropolitan areas (CMAs) also decreased by seven per cent, representing 648 less permits than in 2012.

Read the full article: Market Report

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