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Remodeling spending expected to increase

A recovery in home improvement spending will soon be under way, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released July 15 by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

Remodeling spending is expected to increase on an annual basis by the end of the year and the LIRA points to growth accelerating to the double-digit range in the first quarter of 2011.

"Absent a reversal of recent economic progress, there should be a healthy upturn in home improvement activity by year-end and into next year," says Eric S. Belsky, managing director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies.

"The recovery in home improvement activity appears to be moving beyond simple replacement projects and energy retrofits to broader remodels and upgrades," says Kermit Baker, director of the Remodeling Futures Program. "A wider activity base would help generate the expected growth in the quarters ahead."

The LIRA is released in the third week after each quarter's closing. The next release date is Oct. 21.

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