HomeServe sees no hit on renewals from Covid-19 pandemic

HomeServe has said customers have continued to renew their policies as normal despite the pandemic ripping large chunks out of many other businesses.

The house repairs business said its membership business normally dips during the period April to mid-July, but did not do so more than usual this year.

“Policy renewal and mid-term cancellation rates have continued in line with historic trends in this traditionally quieter period, with no impact from the Covid-19 pandemic,” the company said in an update to shareholders on Friday.

It has not restarted efforts to get new customers on board, with good results from its advertising, the business said.

In May and June, the company bought four other businesses in the heating, ventilation and air conditioning space.

Acquisitions, which had been on pause, have restarted, and the company has a list of attractive targets.

The biggest buy of recent months gave it 38,000 new policy customers in Spain, HomeServe said.

It added: “Customer acquisition marketing has now resumed, with initial small-scale campaigns producing better results than expected, notably in the UK and North America.

“While government guidance only permitted emergency repairs during the lockdown, all claims are now being completed in each of HomeServe’s territories, and customer satisfaction is at record highs, reflecting strong service levels during the pandemic.”

The business said it expects a “solid performance” during the current financial year, and will present its half-yearly results in the middle of November.

Joe Brent, an analyst at Liberum, said: “Call traffic is at record highs at eLocal, although exact metrics have not been disclosed to compare versus the prior year, as HomeServe only acquired the business in November.

“The uptick in activity is as a result of more people being at home and deciding to perform home improvements, which is a trend that HomeServe is seeing across all its geographies.”