Pick-Up Projected in Home Improvement Activity Moving into 2016

Thursday, July 16, 2015 | Abbe Will

The extended easing of gains in residential improvement spending is expected to change course by early next year, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released today by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies. The LIRA projects annual spending growth for home improvements will accelerate to 4.0% by the first quarter of 2016 (Figure 1).

Notes: (e) – estimated; (p) – projected.  Historical data from the second quarter 2014 onward is estimated using the LIRA. Source: Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.  

One strong signal of a pick-up in home improvement activity is the recent rise in home sales activity, since recent homebuyers typically spend about a third more on home improvements than non-movers, even after controlling for any age or income differences. In addition, rising home prices across the country mean rising equity, which should encourage improvement spending by homeowners.

The Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) is designed to estimate national homeowner spending on improvements for the current quarter and subsequent three quarters. For more information about the LIRA, including how it is calculated, please visit the LIRApage on the Joint Center’s website. The LIRA is released by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies in the third week after each quarter’s closing.

Read More About: Remodeling
Abbe Will

Abbe Will

Research Associate & Associate Project Director, Remodeling Futures

Abbe Will manages and contributes research to the Improving America’s Housing report and research brief series and administers the quarterly Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA)....

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