2020Q3 Houzz Renovation Barometer - Construction Sector
Findings from the Q3 2020 Houzz Renovation Barometer, which tracks residential renovation market expectations, project backlogs and recent activity among businesses in the construction sector.
The Expected Business Activity Indicator related to project inquiries and new committed projects rebounded to its pre-pandemic levels at 75 in Q3 (compared to 18 in Q2):This is a result of both expectations for project inquiries and expectations for new committed projects recovering to 79 and 71, respectively (compared to 18, each, in Q2). Among the two reporting business groups, expectations improved significantly for both build-only and design and build remodelers compared to expectations in the last quarter. Expectations of build-only remodelers increased to 76, which is a 4-point increase from expectations in the beginning of the year, for Q1. Design and build remodelers have slightly tempered expectations compared to build-only remodelers, though it is a significant recovery from 21 in Q2 to 73 in Q3, it is still lower than the expectations by this group of businesses for Q1. Expectations among design and build remodelers in seven out of nine Census divisions are still below the levels in the same quarter a year ago. See additional subsector and regional data (PDF).
The Project Backlog Indicator increased to 6.2 weeks nationally at the start of Q3: The overall backlog for the construction sector is 1.3 weeks longer than the same period last year. Among the two reporting business groups, backlogs increased among build-only remodelers to 5.4 weeks (up 0.4 weeks relative to Q2) and increased more substantially among design and build remodelers to 7.0 weeks (up 1.2 weeks relative to Q2). Backlogs vary significantly from 4.6 weeks (West South Central division) to 7.2 weeks (East North Central division) across the nine Census divisions. See additional subsector and regional data (PDF).
The Recent Business Activity Indicator related to project inquiries and new committed projects slightly increased to 49 in Q2 (compared to 48 in Q1): This follows project inquiry activity, which increased to 51 in Q2 (up five points relative to Q1) and a decrease in new committed projects to 46 (down four points relative to Q1). The overall recent activity indicator for the construction services sector was driven by the two business groups, with build-only remodelers reporting an increase in the recent business activity to 48 (up six points relative to Q1), and design and build remodelers reporting a decrease in recent activity to 50 in Q2 (down four points relative to Q1). See additional subsector and regional data (PDF).
The Q3 2020 Barometer was fielded from June 27 through July 10 and garnered responses from 351 build-only remodelers and 706 design and build remodelers (n=1,057 in the construction sector). See detailed methodology here (PDF).
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