Apparently consumer confidence is back, at least according to Houzz and the Home Improvement Research Institute. Harvard University produces an index that tracks remodeling activity (Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity), and it boasts that there was a 20 percent increase in 2013 remodeling activity in major kitchen and bathroom projects. More encouraging is that return on investment numbers have swelled nicely this year too.
ROI is a common discussion when visiting with clients, and national data shows that an immediate return between 65 to 80 percent is expected on professionally designed and installed projects – emphasis on “professionally designed and installed.” The percent varies from geographic region and by type of project. Still, those are comforting numbers and serve to boost consumer confidence even more. When coupled with likely home appreciation over a few years, it’s realistic to imagine that your total investment will likely be realized. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that an updated house with fine amenities is one of the first to be sold when properly listed.
Perhaps even more important in this incredibly stimulating ROI / consumer confidence conversation is emotion. I believe it’s impossible to place a financial value on the increased joy and jazzed family times realized because of your new outdoor living space or updated basement. After all, isn’t that our primary driver in updating and maintaining our homes? Sure, some will suggest that pride and smartly taking care of our assets is the real reason.
As we celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas grows closer, I simply feel that it’s refreshing to be past the greatest recession our nation has ever witnessed and thrilled that homeowners appreciate the value of ROI. More importantly, I am thrilled that we respect the value of incredible living spaces, raising healthy families and creating wonderful environments to do so.