Demand for Carpets & Rugs to Reach 16.5 Billion Square Feet in 2015
Demand for carpet and rug products in the US is projected to increase 7.9 percent annually from a weak 2010 base to 16.5 billion square feet in 2015, accounting for about 64 percent of total floor covering demand. Shipments of carpets and rugs will total 15.3 billion square feet in 2015, valued at $14 billion. Growth will result primarily from a more favorable macroeconomic environment, as the US economy recovers from a deep recession. In particular, the US housing industry, which was hit hard by the recession and the sub-prime loan crisis, is expected to rebound strongly through 2015, sparking renewed demand for carpets and rugs in both new housing and the residential replacement market. Residential markets are key to carpet and rug manufacturers, as these markets accounted for over three-fifths of total demand in 2010. These and other trends are presented in Carpets & Rugs, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc.
Tufted carpet and rug products, particularly broadloom carpet, will continue to dominate demand. These “wall to wall” carpet products remain the industry standard and offer the best combination of economy, durability and aesthetics to the greatest number of consumers. Nevertheless, modular carpet (carpet tile) is an important contributor, particularly in nonresidential markets. Demand is expanding outward from the office and commercial sector into a wide variety of nonresidential markets, and even into residential markets.
Nylon will remain the dominant fiber material used in the manufacture of carpet and rug products. However, polyester has displaced polypropylene as the second most used face fiber material. Polyester fibers, made from recycled beverage bottles, have improved greatly in terms of durability, feel and appearance in recent years, and their cost advantage continues to benefit these fibers.
Carpet and rug products will continue to remain locked in competition with hard surface flooring products such as ceramic and vinyl tile, hardwood flooring and laminates. The competitive advantages of carpet and rug products, such as total installed cost, as well as their tactile and aesthetic qualities, will allow these products to maintain their significant market position. In some cases, as with area rugs and throw rugs, these products complement, rather than compete with, hard surface flooring.
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