Is the Boom in Home Renovations Sending a Signal?

Continued strength in the economy and the housing market, along with a loosening of credit, are inspiring more Americans to make improvements to their homes. The downside to all this activity is that it’s getting harder for consumers to get a deal on a renovation project. The construction industry doesn’t have enough workers to meet the increased demand and the workers they do have are demanding higher pay, all of which is pushing up prices for consumers. Half of general contractors, remodelers and design-build firms surveyed by Houzz in the third quarter cited increased costs in hiring subcontractors, while 37 percent said that they were paying their own employees more. Eight in 10 of the companies surveyed said that they had experienced moderate to severe labor shortages, with the carpenters representing the workers in the shortest supply.

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