Monday, March 19, 2012

Residential Remodeling Index increases 11% year-over-year in January

by Bill McBride on 3/19/2012 08:35:00 AM

From BuildFax:

Residential remodels authorized by building permits in the United States in January were at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 2,998,000. This is 13 percent above the revised December rate of 2,653,000 and is 11 percent above the January 2011 estimate of 2,705,000.

“Residential remodeling this winter is as strong as it has been in more than five years. We expect residential remodeling to continue to grow throughout 2012,” said Joe Emison, Vice President of Research and Development at BuildFax.

The BuildFax Remodeling Index (BFRI) is based on construction permits for residential remodeling projects filed with local building departments across the country. The index estimates the number of properties permitted. The national and regional indexes are based upon a subset of representative building departments in the U.S. and population estimates from the U.S. Census.
Residential Remodeling Index Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the Remodeling Index since January 2000 on a seasonally adjusted basis. Earlier release were not seasonally adjusted.

Remodeling is below the peak levels of the housing boom - with all the equity extraction - but up 29% from the bottom in May 2009.

Note: Permits are not adjusted by value, so this doesn't mean there is more money being spent, just more permit activity. Also some smaller remodeling projects are done without permits and the index will miss that activity.

For residential investment, multi-family construction and home improvement have already picked up, and it appears single family construction will increase in 2012.

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