Makin' Money

Another blow to housing–and economy

Chris Farrell Jul 21, 2011

It looks like the current economic turmoil has undermined another hopeful trend. This time it’s home remodeling. The housing market at best is sunk deep in depression-era doldrums. Nevertheless, homeowners had been spending money on improvements.

Well, it looks likes homeowners are deciding that they can live with an aging kitchen and unfinished basement a little longer. The Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) projects that annual remodeling spending through the first quarter of 2012 will be down 4.0%. The lines on this chart from the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University are going in the wrong direction–down.

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