Remodeling growth predicted to stabilize by year’s end

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The healthy gains in residential remodeling activity estimated for 2014 and the first part of 2015 are expected to decelerate, but then gain a little more traction by the end of the year, according to the recently released Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity report from the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

The LIRA projects annual spending for home improvements will increase a more-modest 2.9 percent in 2015.”

“One of the largest contributors to this dampening of remodeling growth in 2015 is the sluggish existing home sales activity last year,” managing director Chris Herbert said in a statement. “Housing turnover typically sparks significant improvement spending as new owners customize their recent purchases to fit their needs and, with sales down last year, remodeling will feel the effects this year.”

“Moving forward, signs of higher growth in remodeling activity include strengthening retail sales of building materials,” added Abbe Will, a research analyst in the Remodeling Futures Program. “Also, rising home equity and still favorable interest rates continue to encourage owners to reinvest in their homes.”

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