This week, the National Association of Home Builders released its third-quarter Remodeling Market Index (RMI), which shows no change in remodeling activity since the second quarter. The RMI measures market demand for current and future residential remodeling projects based on remodelers’ perceptions and indicators of future activity, such as calls for bids.
The Index stayed steady — 40.7 in the second quarter and 40.8 in the third quarter — with current market conditions increasing a little from 42.6 to 43.4. Future indicators of remodeling declined slightly from 38.9 in the second quarter to 38.1 in the third quarter.
“The gross domestic product has the same indication of a soft spot in the economy starting in May and extending through September,” says NAHB chief economist David Crowe. Though the GDP shows a 2% increase in the third quarter, he expects the revision, to be released Nov. 23, to come in around 1.8% or 1.9%.
The Nov. 2 election does remove one piece of uncertainty for the American consumer, Crowe says. “That is what the pause was all about — the consumer is becoming more and more uncertain about a lot of things: their job, house value, the overall economy.”
Crowe says that although the election won’t bring any major changes until the transitional period is over, he anticipates Congress is unlikely to bring back the home buyer tax credit that expired in April. —Nina Patel, senior editor,