CAMBRIDGE, MA - The coming year is expected to see sustained momentum in home remodeling and repair spending, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released today by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. The LIRA projects that annual growth in home improvement and repair expenditures will remain elevated throughout 2017 with spending levels ending the year up 6.7 percent at $317 billion, on par with the 6.9 percent growth estimated for 2016.
“Growth in home prices is continuing at a healthy pace and encouraging homeowners to make remodeling investments,” says Chris Herbert, Managing Director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies. “Home sales are remaining on an upward trajectory, as well, and this coupled with continued growth in remodeling permit activity suggests another strong year for home improvements.”
“Although above-average growth is expected this year, we’ve lowered our projection for market size somewhat with the recent release of new benchmark data from the American Housing Survey,” says Abbe Will, Research Analyst in the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center. “Spending in 2014 and 2015 was not quite as robust as our LIRA model estimated, growing 11.3 percent over these two years compared to 14.3 percent as estimated.”
More information about the newly released benchmark data and changes to the projected LIRA market size can be found on the Housing Perspectives blog.
On Tuesday, February 28, the Joint Center for Housing Studies will release its latest biennial report on the remodeling industry, Improving America’s Housing 2017: Remodeling for a New Generation. Changing household demographics are projected to support healthy growth in the industry over the coming decade as baby boomers age in place and millennials move into homeownership. An embargoed copy of the report will be sent to media the week of February 20, 2017.
For more information, visit: www.jchs.harvard.edu/research/improving-americas-housing
As of April 21, 2016, the LIRA has undergone a major re-benchmarking and recalculation in order to better forecast a broader segment of the national residential remodeling market. For more information on this, see our blog, and read the research note: Re-Benchmarking the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity.
The Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) provides a short-term outlook of national home improvement and repair spending to owner-occupied homes. The indicator, measured as an annual rate-of-change of its components, is designed to project the annual rate of change in spending for the current quarter and subsequent four quarters, and is intended to help identify future turning points in the business cycle of the home improvement and repair industry. Originally developed in 2007, the LIRA was re-benchmarked in April 2016 to a broader market measure based on the biennial American Housing Survey.
The LIRA is released by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University in the third week after each quarter’s closing. The next LIRA release date is April 20, 2017.
The Remodeling Futures Program, initiated by the Joint Center for Housing Studies in 1995, is a comprehensive study of the factors influencing the growth and changing characteristics of housing renovation and repair activity in the United States. The Program seeks to produce a better understanding of the home improvement industry and its relationship to the broader residential construction industry.
The Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies advances understanding of housing issues and informs policy. Through its research, education, and public outreach programs, the center helps leaders in government, business, and the civic sectors make decisions that effectively address the needs of cities and communities. Through graduate and executive courses, as well as fellowships and internship opportunities, the Joint Center also trains and inspires the next generation of housing leaders. For more information, please visit www.jchs.harvard.edu.