By John Marchiony, PRO New England Executive Director
On Wednesday January 10th, PRO members and colleagues gathered at the Verve Hilton Hotel to discuss challenges and opportunities for home remodeling in 2024 with Abbe H. Will, Senior Research Associate and Associate Project Director, Remodeling Futures at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.
Greg Antonioli, President, Out of the Woods Construction & Cabinetry, took meticulous notes on Abbe Will’s presentation of findings from the Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies study. Here are his five key takeaways:
- Over 55 year-olds will account for ½ of home improvement spending
- Remodeling wages are up 18% 2020-2023, while overall inputs (direct costs) are up 30%
- Home prices are up 45% since pandemic, resulting in an average increase of $135K in home equity
- Opportunities: aging in place improvements, natural disaster repairs, energy-related improvements
- In the past year (?) 33% of households spent money on trips/vacations, while only 26% of households spent money on home improvements
“The information provided by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies is amazing in its breadth, depth, and thoughtful approach, and Abbe Will gave a great presentation.
Locally, I hope we will be somewhat insulated from the nationally projected moderate downturn. Based on the presentation, at Gallagher Remodeling we will continue to focus on the projects at which our company excels, and seek out the clients who are the best fit for our services.”
Catherine M Follett, CEO, Renovisions
“Our remodeling industry faces many challenges with high inflationary costs, skilled labor shortage and higher interest rates to name a few. It’s reassuring that despite short term setbacks, Abbe Will’s research at Harvard indicates long-term growth, keeping us in the game.”
“Abbe Will gave a sophisticated and evidence-based outlook for remodeling this year. Exactly what our association needed; though it was less positive than last year, it helped our leadership team at Red House think about 2024 financial and growth goals. And … I always love seeing old friends and new ones. I’m very lucky to be a part of this community. What a great way to start the year.”
“Wonderful start to the New Year seeing old friends and meeting new friends!”
“The content from Abbe Will and Harvard was excellent, even though prospects for 2024 aren’t as upbeat as last year. What was even better, though, was the chance to reconnect with Kathy DeMeyer, Roger Gallagher, Amy McFadden, and to meet new industry pros like Jan Luchetti.”