The instability and fluctuations of new construction in the current housing market have certainly been a challenge for contractors, construction companies and homeowners. Home prices are skyrocketing, global supply chain disruptions are persisting, mortgage rates are increasing and housing inventory has fallen even more since the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s been a wild ride for potential homebuyers across the country, and the trend is expected to continue throughout the rest of the year and into 2023.
However, unlike new construction, the remodeling market appears to have remained relatively stable year-over-year (YoY).
An April 2022 report from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) included details of its Remodeling Market Index (RMI) survey. The survey accounts for the first quarter of 2022 and essentially provides remodelers with information about how the market is doing.
The main takeaway is that residential remodeling professional have confidence in the market for projects of all sizes. The survey had a reading of 86, the same reading reported in the first quarter of 2021. Kurt Clason, owner of Clason Remodeling Co. in Ossipee, N.H., and NAHB’s remodeler chair, suggested that business remained strong for remodelers working on all project sizes at the start of 2022.
However, he also mentioned that “a few [remodelers] are starting to report that customers are reluctant to move forward with a project because of delays and higher costs.”
Clason believes that customers are hesitant due to the ongoing supply chain issues builders face. Bottlenecks at the country’s largest shipping ports have negatively impacted the building industry because builders cannot obtain the necessary materials to complete home renovation projects or construct new homes.
Remodeling projects likely remained stable during the pandemic because many people spent more time at home and identified areas that could use a facelift.
According to the popular trade publication Pro Remodeler, there are five remodeling trends expected to boom this year:
- Specialized outdoor rooms: After spending so much time indoors, many homeowners want to spend more time outdoors, but may want to have some type of shelter. Some popular outdoor projects are pizza ovens, fire pits and gardens. Additionally, many homeowners want to remodel their lawns, remove trees from their property or upgrade porches, balconies or decks.
- Improved mudrooms: Homeowners are looking to remodel their mudrooms, also called all-purpose drop zones, for more functionality. Taking off shoes, dropping packages, using more storage and adding washers and dryers are popular updates
- Flexible home offices: With so many people working from home, having a flexible and reliable workspace is essential. Many homeowners want to include a private home office with access to natural sunlight, and prefer a space that keeps noise levels down.
- Accessory dwelling units (ADUs): More clients will likely request ADUs in the coming months. ADUs have grown in popularity in recent years—older adults may want to rent out an ADU or use one to age in place.
- Window, door and wall changes: Like a specialized outdoor room, remodeling windows, doors and walls to allow for more daylight will likely be a popular option for homeowners. More people want to feel connected to nature, and installing glass structures or extra-high windows may be their preference.
Although the housing market is not the most stable, the remodeling industry remains steady, despite the challenges caused by the pandemic. It’s critical for professionals in the building, housing and remodeling markets to keep up with trends and understand the state of the industry during this tumultuous time. Thankfully, remodeling projects are still going strong, and predictions suggest that trend will continue into the coming years.