Annual gains in homeowner spending for improvements and repairs are set to give out by the second half of 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 of Harvard University. The LIRA projects that annual home improvement and maintenance expenditures will post a modest decline of 0.3 percent through the third quarter of 2020.
“Continued weakness in existing home sales and new construction will lead to sluggish remodeling activity next year,” says Chris Herbert, Managing Director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies. “Slowdowns in other key indicators of improvement spending—project permitting, sales of building materials, and home prices—also suggest the remodeling market may be reaching a turning point.”
“At $325 billion, owner improvement and repair spending in the coming year is expected to essentially remain flat compared to market spending of $326 billion over the past four quarters,” says Abbe Will, Associate Project Director in the Remodeling Futures Program at the Center. “However, today’s low mortgage interest rates may help counter some of these headwinds, which could buoy home improvement expenditure over the coming year.”