Cambridge, MA – Solid growth is expected in the home remodeling market this year but momentum should begin to moderate in the fourth quarter, 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. Sluggishness in the housing market and specifically in home sales may result in a deceleration of home improvement spending from double-digit annual growth through the third quarter to a year-over-year gain in the high single digits by the end of the year.

“The housing recovery has at least temporarily lost some of its momentum,” says Eric S. Belsky, managing director of the Joint Center. “And as a result, remodeling spending is expected to follow suit and see slower growth beginning later this year.”

“Home improvement spending has already recovered a significant share of its losses from the downturn,” says Kermit Baker, director of the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center. “As spending moves into the next phase, we expect to see recent double-digit growth tail off to its longer-term average in the mid-single-digit range.”

PLEASE Note: An important change was made to the LIRA estimation model this quarter. With the upheaval in financial markets in recent years, the traditional relationship between interest rates and home improvement spending has significantly deteriorated. As a result, long-term interest rates have been removed from the LIRA estimation model. For more information on the implications of this change, please visit our blog.

Source: The Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies

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