Home Improvement Remains Hot Spot For U.S. Economy

While the U.S. economy shrank by 3.5 per cent in 2020, spending on home improvements and repairs grew last year, increasing by more than three per cent, says ‘Improving America's Housing 2021,’ set for release March 25 by the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March of last year, many professional remodeling projects came to a halt. With a significant number of people working from home, however, DIY projects became popular, often aimed at improving living spaces for work, school, and leisure. Additionally, remodeling activity shifted away from expensive markets to more affordable metros where many households bought homes for the first time or traded up for more living space and began to undertake home improvement projects. At the same time, homeowners with job and income losses have struggled to keep up with mortgage payment – let alone home maintenance – widening the disparity in housing conditions between lowest- and highest-income households. The outlook for the remodeling industry is promising, though; the aging of the U.S. population and the housing stock, as well as an increase in climate-related disasters, will likely keep growth in the remodeling market strong for years to come.