WASHINGTON, DC — U.S. homeowners embarked on a wide variety of renovations and remodeling projects over the past year, with a high percentage reporting that they would have remodeled regardless of the COVID-19 pandemic, and an even higher percentage saying that remodeling one area of their home inspired them to remodel other areas.
That is among the key findings of the “2022 Remodeling Impact Report,” a joint study by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) that was aimed at measuring the impact of COVID-19 on the price and relative value of various remodeling projects. Among the topics studied were the reasons why people decide to remodel, and the fulfillment that’s experienced after a successful project has been completed.
“Our study revealed that homeowners tend to undertake a remodeling project for any number of reasons,” said Jessica Lautz, v.p./demographics and behavioral insights at the Washington, DC-based NAR. “In some instances, homeowners were content with sprucing up a room with a simple paint job, while in other cases, families decided to take on the task of renovating an entire attic or basement to add additional living space to their home.”
The reasons why homeowners decided to renovate varied, according to the NAR/NARI report. Thirty-five percent of surveyed owners said the single most important result from their remodel was better functionality and livability. Upon completion of their project, 22% said they had achieved durable and long-lasting results, materials, and appliances. Fourteen percent reported additional beauty and aesthetics due to their remodel.
The report also calculated consumers’ viewpoints toward their projects. Projects that made renovators want to remain home, or remodel jobs that sparked an increase of enjoyment among occupants, received a high “Joy Score,” with 10 being considered a perfect Joy Score. Among the projects awarded scores of 10 were painting a home’s entire interior, painting one room, adding a home office, hardwood floor refinishing, closet renovation, insulation upgrades and adding a new home office.
Kitchen upgrades were also popular among homeowners, with the task receiving a 9.8 Joy Score. The top reason (32%) to take on a kitchen overhaul was the desire to upgrade worn out surfaces, finishes or materials. The second top reason (20%) was to add features and improve livability.
The NAR/NARI report also examined numerous remodeling projects and provided “a cost recovery estimate” – an estimate of the likely dollar value each project would add to a house during resale – based on factors that include project design, quality of materials, location, age and condition of the home, and homeowner preferences.
The average kitchen remodel among surveyed homeowners was about $45,000, with $30,000, or 67%, of that able be recovered as a result of the renovation, the report found.