The home remodeling industry has rebounded big time this year, and the push is only continuing as homeowners attempt to finish renovations before winter weather puts a damper on construction projects in much of the country.
Some of these remodeling projects are simply repairs homeowners have delayed while the weather is warm. This week, home improvement business owners across northern states have reported that their crews are busy installing insulation and repairing roofs.
But other improvements are true upgrades homeowners are finally feeling secure enough to pay for.
Home Improvement Incentives
The combination of the growing economy, rising home values and low interest rates makes this an attractive time to invest in home improvements. Home prices have risen steeply, whereas interest rates — at least up to this point — have not grown in proportion.
During the recession, due to rapidly declining home values beginning in 2007, poor prospects regarding added equity discouraged homeowners from taking on any optional projects. Even those who could cover the costs of renovation felt that improvements would never pay off and were therefore not wise investments. As a result, many homeowners delayed all but the most essential household fixes.
Now, however, rising home prices indicate that money spent on upgrades can be at least partially recovered whenever the houses are eventually sold.
“Our ROI has doubled since last year at this time. People are investing in their homes more,” says Joe Wilda Jr., President of Tri-Star Cabinet & Top Co., Inc. “We are not only seeing complete kitchen remodels, also seeing a lot of bars for basements, entertainment centers and bath remodels.”
Strong Forecast for Remodeling Industry
The last peak for the home remodeling industry was in 2006, before the housing bubble burst. According to the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University, U.S. homeowners spent $145 billion on home improvement in 2006.
The Center experts expect that number to be surpassed by the end of 2014.
The regrowth of the home renovations industry creates jobs for construction workers, painters, plumbers, electricians and others.
Home improvement stores that cater both to contractors and homeowners ambitious enough to undertake projects themselves are also predicting growth.