HARDI Pulse Survey: Heating Season Inventory

BY Tim Fisher
9/29/2020 - HVAC Market Intelligence

Key Takeaway: Despite the relative consensus that heating equipment will be in short supply this winter, there remains a high degree of uncertainty among HARDI members about expected demand levels this winter.

We sent out a brief survey to HARDI members on Friday, September 18th to get a sense of the total supply of heating equipment as we enter the colder months. Across every HARDI region, participants indicated concern for a possible shortage of heating equipment this winter with demand expected to be high. Only in HARDI’s Southeastern region did a majority of participants indicate that their inventory levels are sufficient for heating season.

Despite the relative consensus that heating equipment will be in short supply this winter, there remains a high degree of uncertainty among HARDI members about expected demand levels this winter. Years like 2020 are precisely the reason HARDI launched the Market Intelligence unit last December, and we encourage HARDI members grappling with inventory planning or other business questions to take advantage of our Custom Intelligence offerings.

National Snapshot (46 participants)

Of the 46 participants in our survey, 8 do business in more than one HARDI region (elevating total regional participation from 46 to 68). The majority (14) of respondents do at least some business in HARDI’s Central region, while participation from the remaining regions looks as follows:

  • Great Lakes: 11 participants
  • Northeastern: 6 participants
  • Mid-Atlantic: 9 participants
  • Southeastern: 10 participants
  • Southwestern: 6 participants
  • Western: 9 participants
  • Canadian: 3 participants

Supply Chain Expectations

Survey participants responded to the statement, “I am concerned there will be a shortage of heating equipment this upcoming heating season,” in the following ways:

  • 87 percent agreed with the statement, indicating broad concern for the industry’s capacity to meet expected demand for heating equipment. Of the 87 percent of respondents who agreed with the statement, 39 percent strongly agreed.
  • 7 percent neither agreed nor disagreed with the statement.
  • 6 percent disagreed with the statement, indicating that they are not concerned about a heating equipment shortage this winter. Of the 6 percent who disagreed, 2 percent strongly disagreed.

Inventory Expectations

Survey participants responded to the statement, “I believe my heating equipment inventory is sufficient for the upcoming heating season,” in the following ways:

  • 26 percent agreed that their heating equipment inventory is sufficient, with 9 percent of those respondents in strong agreement.
  • 26 percent neither agreed nor disagreed with the statement.
  • 48 percent disagreed that they have sufficient heating equipment inventory, with 7 percent of those respondents in strong disagreement.

Demand Expectations

Survey participants responded to the statement, “I anticipate a higher demand for heating equipment this winter,” in the following ways:

  • 68 percent agreed with the statement, indicating that they anticipate higher demand for heating equipment this winter. Of the 68 percent of respondents who agreed with the statement, 9 percent were in strong agreement.
  • 30 percent neither agreed nor disagreed with the statement.
  • 2 percent disagreed with the statement, and no respondent strongly disagreed.

Regional Snapshot

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