Homeowners are increasingly enthusiastic about investing labor, time, and money into improvements in both the interior and exterior of their homes and project planning, according to the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI). Two separate reports from HIRI suggest homeowner attitudes around home improvements are positive.

HIRI's 2019 Project Decision Study suggests financial outlays on home improvements continue to rise, even as homeowner spending in several other categories is stagnating or declining. The study also suggests homeowners tend to spend long periods of time considering projects before moving forward. The average time from the birth of an idea to the "go-ahead decision" is six to seven months, according to HIRI. Cost concerns may factor into the long delay and, in some cases, the cancellation of certain projects. HIRI finds price is the top criteria when homeowners are considering projects. The report also finds that homeowners are increasingly accessing online resources to do project research, mirroring the findings of Buildertrend's 2020 Digitally Savvy Homeowners Report. According to HIRI, more than 90% of home improvement consumers report researching online ahead of home improvement purchases, with 40% citing online research as "extremely important" to their final decision. While many homeowners may be doing research into residential construction companies, they also may be researching to see whether they can take on a home improvement project without professional help. Homeowners are most likely to purchase hand tools and accessories, kitchen and bathroom accessories, electrical and lighting products, and power tools and accessories online after conducting product research.

While HIRI's Project Decision Study suggests home improvement spending is on the rise, its Q4 2019 Consumer Project Sentiment Tracking Study found project planning ending 2019 on a strong note. In particular, the study found the western region of the United States surged in project planning activity after a "disappointing close to 2018." The tracking study defines project planning as work homeowners are planning to do around the home in the three months following the quarter in which they are surveyed. Despite project planning ending the year strongly, consumer confidence was not strong at the close of the year. HIRI noted that consumer confidence was not as unsteady at the end of the year as in the middle of the year when tariffs were at the forefront of the news cycle.