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Harvard Revises LIRA Report Upward 28 Percent

Annual remodeling spending is expected to reach nearly $325 billion nationally by early next year

April 25, 2016

 

 

After initially determining home improvement spending would rise 7.6 percent by the third quarter of this year, Harvard's Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies has revised its predictions upward.

Strongly accelerating growth in home improvement and repair spending is expected heading into 2017, according to the newly re-benchmarked Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. The new and improved LIRA projects that home remodeling spending will increase 8.6 percent by the end of 2016 and then further accelerate to 9.7 percent by the first quarter of next year.

“Ongoing gains in home prices and sales are encouraging more homeowners to pursue larger-scale improvement projects this year compared to last with permitted projects climbing at a good pace,” says Chris Herbert, Managing Director of the Joint Center. “On the strength of these gains, the level of annual spending for remodeling and repairs is expected to reach nearly $325 billion nationally by early next year.”

“Our freshly recalibrated indicator now forecasts a broader segment of the national residential remodeling market that includes both improvement and repair activity to the owner-occupied housing stock,” says Abbe Will, a research analyst in the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center. “With this re-benchmarking, the LIRA now more accurately sizes the remodeling market and continues to anticipate major turning points in the spending cycle.”

Abbe Will, a research analyst in the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center, said “The real test this year will be whether the industry can clear ongoing bottlenecks in labor availability to fully meet this increased demand.”

Source: Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University

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