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Less people making home improvements

There has been a drop in the number of people planning to make structural changes to their homes.

The findings come from Sainsbury's Home Insurance, which has found that 13 per cent of homeowners are planning work on their homes in the next year.

Andrew Leech, director of the National Home Improvement Council, said that the figures were "disappointing".

Suggesting it could be the fault of the recession, he added that some people "are finding it difficult to get loans to carry out this kind of work".

"Now is a really good time to carry out this sort of work because building costs are lower than usual and there are some pretty keen prices coming through from builders for work to be done," he added.

The study also found that nearly a third of people making changes were not aware that they needed to inform their insurers before they carried out work.