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How the Recession Changed Home Renovations


How the Recession Changed Home Renovations

The Top 3 Ways the Recession Changed Home Renovations - The economy continues to gain steam, and more Americans are taking notice. Now that many homeowners know the worst part of the recession is behind us, they are starting to tackle more home improvement projects. In fact, the National Association of Home Builders predicts a 20% increase in spending on remodeling this year!

But unlike a few years ago – when homeowners would make upgrades and repairs to their homes with the intent of selling the property for a bigger profit – most of the renovations being made today are for their own enjoyment. Instead of giving the home a makeover before listing it, more homeowners are treating their property as their castle, spending money on upgrades they will enjoy, and are staying put instead of trying to sell.

Market experts say that's the biggest difference they are seeing between home renovations during the housing boom and ones being made today, but there are several other ways the recession changed the home improvement business, including the 3 listed below:

1. Paying with cash
If the recession taught us anything, it's that we need to try and avoid debt whenever possible. When the economy collapsed, many Americans were laid off and got behind on their mortgage payments. The national unemployment rate skyrocketed, and the housing market was flooded with distressed properties.Even those who were fortunate enough to keep their jobs and homes felt the sting of a deflated economy. Most everyone began living on a budget and stopped racking up their credit card bills. Now, even though the economy is recovering, many Americans are still apprehensive to use credit. Builders say most homeowners who are remodeling their homes these days are paying with cash and are making upgrades when they can afford them, instead of trying to do everything at once and putting it all on a credit card.

2. Do-it-yourself design
Prior to the recession, many homeowners would rely upon an interior decorator or architect to come up with a plan for their renovations. But these days, more and more people are deciding to do that portion of the work themselves.
Social media sites like Pinterest are where many homeowners are going to get ideas, and then taking them to a professional for nothing more than a final touch. In fact, since building construction has been so slow in recent years, many contractors still don't have a steady amount of work and are more than willing to tackle these bit-by-bit projects. By coming up with ideas themselves, homeowners are only having to pay for the actual construction, not the designer costs, too.

3. Price negotiations
When the economy was booming, contractors were being offered more work than they had to time to do. But then, the bottom fell out of the housing market, and many contractors found themselves looking for work. Their workload has picked up in many markets around the country, but many still don't have quite enough projects on their plate. As a result, most contractors are willing to negotiate with a homeowner over the price to make some home renovations. A lot of smart homeowners are realizing they have the ability to haggle with a contractor and are making sure they get a good deal!


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