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Remodeling Spending to Be Slower, But Still Strong, in Early 2015
Jul 24, 2014
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The strong growth in remodeling spending in 2014 is expected to slow in early 2015—but is expected to still be significant.

The United States government shutdown in October 2013 impacted, among other things, data collection by the U.S. Census Bureau's for its home remodeling spending reports. The Bureau released its annual revisions on July 1, 2014, with remodeling spending revisions going back to January 2012, and with especially revisions for the second half of 2013.

The U.S. Census Bureau's revised data shows that the home improvement market grew 5.6% in 2013.

Growth in home improvement activity is expected to peak in the second half of 2014, and then ease heading into 2015, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released in late July by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

The Joint Center expects home improvement spending of 9.9% in full-year 2014. Annual growth s expected to slow to 7.0% in the first quarter of 2015.

“With the economy improving slower than expected and home sales struggling to keep up with last year’s pace, the recent strong gains in remodeling spending will likely moderate later this year,” says Chris Herbert, Research Director at the Joint Center. “Although this presents a challenge for the remodeling industry, the LIRA continues to project significant growth going into 2015.”

“Despite some headwinds, there continue to be promising signs for remodeling,” says Kermit Baker, director of the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center. “Remodeling contractor sentiment remains positive and house prices continue to rise in most areas of the country.”

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