Remodelers Report Strong Second-Quarter Activity
The nation’s remodelers remained bullish about business in this year’s second quarter, though somewhat less so than in the opening three months, according to the latest NAHB Remodeling Market Index (RMI), which was released last week.
“The high rates of home sales and home price appreciation are helping fuel strong remodeling activity,” said Remodelors™ Council Chairman Don Novak, CGR, CAPS, CGB, a remodeler from Cedar Rapids, Iowa. “Though we saw little change overall, the RMI still shows above-average activity for the past quarter and this will continue into the third.”
The RMI is derived from a quarterly national survey of more than 500 remodelers and is seasonally adjusted.
The remodelers’ assessment of current market conditions dropped one-half point from 52.9 to 52.4 on the index between the first and second quarters, and their future expectations also moved down — from 53.6 to 52.8. Even so, both scores indicated above-normal levels of activity.
Regionally, strong readings in the Northeast, South and West were partially offset by a sub-par report from the Midwest. Current market conditions climbed from 53.8 to 59.1 in the Northeast and from 53.6 to 58.5 in the West; they dropped from 48.9 to 44.7 in the Midwest and from 58.4 to 55.7 in the South.
“The continuation of positive readings in most parts of the country reflects remodelers’ confidence in their component of the housing sector,” said NAHB Chief Economist Dave Seiders. “In markets where there is strong real estate appreciation, remodeling continues to see near-record growth.”
Remodelers’ confidence centered on the owner-occupied side of their business, where current market activity moved up from 55.8 to 63.3 and future expectations dipped from 56.7 to 55.8. Renter-occupied units fell from a current rating of 47.7 to 45.8, but future expectations rose from 41.0 to 43.0.
In a special section that is a regular feature of the index, remodelers were asked questions relating to the profile of the industry.
Sixty-four percent of those participating in the survey indicated that they had 20 years or more of experience, up from 54% in 2002 and 59% in 2003.
Thirty-two percent said that they had completed an advanced degree program in graduate school, compared to 11% in 2002 and 10% in 2003. However, only 42% said they had a college degree, down from 50% in 2002 and 53% in 2003.
For more information, e-mail Jim Lapides at NAHB, or call him at 800-368-5242 x8451.
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