Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University

Concerns of a possible pandemic-induced downturn on the remodeling market has dissipated, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University (JCHS). Instead, the third quarter LIRA projects moderate gains in homeowner spending for residential improvements and repairs through much of 2021.

For its first two reports in 2020, the Remodeling Futures program provided a downside range for its remodeling outlook, incorporating retail sales of building materials, home prices and GDP. In the second quarter, the downside range projected annual spending would increase moderately from the third quarter of 2020 through the first quarter of 2021 before declining by the middle of next year. However, with greater clarity about the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic’s impact on the overall economy and the general resilience of housing markets, the Remodeling Futures Program is no longer providing the downside range for its home remodeling outlook.

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