In Depth Analysis: CalculatedRisk Newsletter on Real Estate (Ad Free) Read it here.

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Home Improvement Rebounds

by Calculated Risk on 4/09/2011 09:45:00 PM

Summary for Week ending April 8th

From Sandra Jones at the Chicago Tribune: Slow housing market convinces owners to fix up rather than move out

Seasonal hiring at Lowe's Cos., the nation's No. 2 home improvement retailer, is up 15 percent this spring as homeowners, feeling more secure in their jobs, tackle maintenance projects delayed during the recession. Midwest regional chain Menard Inc. is expanding again. It plans to build 12 stores this year, up from four in 2010.

And Home Depot Inc., the largest home improvement retailer, reported in February its first annual sales increase since 2006, before the housing market crashed.
Some of this increase is maintenance and repairs - and some of the increase is due to people sprucing up their homes:
Kris and Dennis Cortes of Flossmoor are typical of the post-recession home remodelers, industry experts said. The parents of five children said they chose to stay in the home they bought 20 years ago and to give the house a face-lift. They are adding a couple gables to the roof, installing a new garage door and updating the landscaping.
The BuildFax remodeling index has been showing a strong rebound in remodeling too. Although new home construction is still struggling (usually the largest component of residential investment), two other key components of residential investment are increasing in 2011: multi-family construction and home improvement.