PALO ALTO, Calif. — In its 10th annual Houzz & Home survey, Houzz found that home renovations increased 15% over the past year, with kitchens, outdoor spaces, home offices and technology receiving the More attention.
And the increase in renovation is only set to continue, with 56% of homeowners surveyed planning some type of renovation project in 2021, the highest percentage since 2017 at 52%.
In 2020, the survey shows the median home improvement spend was $15,000, and higher budget projects saw an increase from $80,000 per project in 2018 and 2019 to $85,000 last year.
“While the pandemic caused initial concerns for the home improvement industry, many homeowners finally had the time and financial means to move forward with long-awaited projects over the past year” , said Marine Sargsyan, senior economist at Houzz. “This pent-up demand, along with other long-standing market fundamentals such as accumulated equity, will allow homeowners to continue investing in their current homes rather than face soaring prices in the housing market. “
The reasons for the increase in home renovations are varied: 44% say they finally had time for the project; 36% said they finally had the financial means; 25% decided to renovate rather than move; and 18% said they had remodeled to accommodate a recent lifestyle change.
While baby boomers have historically been the leader in renovation activity and spending, Gen Xers have closed the gap in 2020. Last year, baby boomers (52% of homeowners in renovation, up from 55% in 2019) spent an average of $15,000, while Gen Xers (32% of homeowners renovating, up from 30% the previous year) increased their spending by $2,000 to reach a median value of $14,000.
Millennials, who continue to make up 12% of renovation homeowners, remained unchanged at a median of $10,000 per project.
Where were the renovations?
- While indoor room renovations remain the most common projects (68%), outdoor spaces continue to grow in popularity, up 57% in 2020. The most popular projects included landscaping and patio upgrades , porches or balconies.
- Homeowners have also stepped up their investments in renovating small areas of the home that could once be considered a luxury and are now a necessity. Demand for home office projects increased by four percentage points to 14% of projects and spending on these projects increased by 10% in 2020, reaching a media of $1,100.
- Smart home technology continues to grow in popularity, with things like streaming media players and televisions seeing the biggest increases. However, a greater proportion of remodeling homeowners opted for smart products for their outdoor spaces, with 19% choosing security cameras, 7% adding light fixtures and 3% adding speakers or audio systems.
- 87% of respondents hired professional help for their home improvement projects in 2020, often hiring more than one professional per project. While specialist service providers were the most common (49%), construction (36%) and design (18%) professionals were also important.
And where were the owners spending the most? San Jose, California tops the list of the top 10 metropolitan areas with the highest median spending on renovations in 2020 ($30,000), retaining the top spot since 2017. Homeowners in California and Florida – San Francisco ( $21,250), Los Angeles ($20,500), San Diego ($20,000), and Miami ($20,000) — made up the list of the top five metropolitan areas in terms of renovation spending in 2020.
About the survey
The 2021 study includes more than 70,000 respondents in the United States alone, providing insight into the home improvement activity of millions of Houzz site and mobile app users.
The Houzz & Home survey was sent to registered Houzz users and was conducted from April to May 2021.
The full report is available here.