BLOG

COVID-19 Summary: Final Insights From the Tracker

The Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) and The Farnsworth Group partnered up for the past three months to conduct essential research regarding project requests and closures, homeowner DIY purchases, contractor business, and materials supply trends in the wake of COVID-19. 

Read More

Benefits of Becoming HIRI Member: Upcoming Research Releases

The home improvement industry has seen significant shifts this year, especially with the rise of DIY projects due to stay-at-home orders. Keeping up with how homeowners and construction professionals make their purchasing decisions is a challenge. 

Read More

INFOGRAPHIC: Size of Market Update

In May 2020, the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) partnered with IHS Markit to provide a Size of Market forecast update. Here are a couple of highlights

  • Like nearly every aspect of the US economy, home improvement product purchases have had a significant downturn in the tail end of the first quarter and all throughout the second quarter. A few silver-linings: home improvement has not been hit as hard as other industries.

Read More

What You Need to Know: Secondary vs. Primary Research

Research is a form of scientific investigation that uses empirical methods to collect data through various methodologies, is topical and always begins with an industry question. The data gathered and/or disseminated is then used to inform industry professionals, such as those in the home improvement industry, so they can make appropriate decisions that are relevant to their own goals.

Not all home improvement research is conducted the same, however. While there are multiple methodologies used in research, the two main research types are primary and secondary research. It’s important for home improvement industry professionals to know the difference between them and what benefits each research type can bring to their knowledge and project execution.

Read More

The Impacts of COVID-19 on DIYer and Pro Behavior

The impacts of the current pandemic are widespread, and the construction industry (and its economy) is no stranger to its effects. The impact of COVID-19 on home improvement projects has become a challenge for many manufacturers and retailers.

A few purchasing trends have changed significantly, especially with DIY projects and research around home improvement products. If you’re selling to DIYers and home improvement contractors, there are a few things to note when it comes to selling your product during the current COVID crisis. 

Read More

INFOGRAPHIC: Labor Shortage in the Construction Industry

In the first quarter of 2020, the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) partnered with The Farnsworth Group to survey more than 500 contractor professionals to gain their insight into the labor shortage and how it has impacted their business. Here are a few highlights:

  • Half of the professionals surveyed said that at least one of their projects was delayed due to the labor shortage and of these, 35% experienced significant delays of more than 3 weeks.
  • 53% of contractor professionals are taking on fewer projects in order to combat the labor shortage. Others are narrowing the types of projects they’ll take on and/or the geographic region they will service. 

To learn more about the labor shortage in the construction industry, download this free infographic detailing results from the HIRI 2020 Contractor Topic Study.

DIY Response to COVID Home Improvement Tracker

COVID-19 and the DIYers' Response

Recently, the Home Improvement Research Institute partnered with The Farnsworth Group to track the impact of COVID-19 on DIY home improvement activity.  

Read More

COVID-19 DIY & Contractor Tracker

Announcing Our Weekly COVID-19 Impact Tracker

Last week, partnered with The Farnsworth Group, we released the first data from our new weekly COVID-19 impact tracker. This tracker shows COVID-19’s impact on our industry.

We will be fielding a survey weekly to 1,000 DIYers and hundreds of Contractors to get a consistent pulse on the buying behaviors and project statuses broken down by region and generation.


Read More

Home Improvement Project Planning Q42019

NEW: Q4 2019 Updates on Consumer Project Sentiment

Project planning is defined as any work homeowners are planning to do around the home in the three months following the quarter in which they are surveyed. There are 33 possible home improvement project areas (32 specific projects and “other”) that are covered in the study, ranging from room renovations to roofing, driveway or walkway installation or repair to plumbing or electrical projects to lawn and garden upgrades.

Read More

New Webinar: Contractor Purchasing Trends

New Webinar: Discover the Latest in Contractor Purchasing Trends

In 2019, the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) partnered with The Farnsworth Group to survey 1,695 contractor professionals, including remodelers and specialty tradespeople, to gain insight into the contractor product market. Here are a few highlights:

Read More

The Future of the Home Improvement Customer

Amplify Your Category’s Growth in 2020 and Beyond

Offered by the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) in partnership with Kantar Futures, the Future of Home Improvement study aims to identify how consumer trends will influence products and services that homeowners will demand in the next two to five years.

Read More

HIRI's Home Improvement Outlook 2020

Ask an Economist: Home Improvement’s 2020 Outlook

In 2019, real GDP slowed from 3.1% in the first quarter to 1.9% at the end of Q3. Consumer spending is leading the United States expansion, supported by gains in employment, real wages and household wealth. Economic expansion is expected to continue through 2020, but clear negative forces have the potential to dampen this growth.

Read More
1 Comments

5 Key Factors Driving Consumer Project Decisions

5 Key Factors Driving Consumer Project Decisions

Homeowners are increasingly enthusiastic about investing labor, time and money into their homes for interior and exterior improvements.

Read More

Sell More Home Improvement Products Online

How to Sell More Home Improvement Products Online

More than 90% of home improvement consumers report researching online ahead of a home improvement purchase, with 40% citing online research as “extremely important” to their final decision. While online purchases are growing rapidly, there is still a clear divide between products consumers will likely buy online and those they consider unlikely to purchase online. Which products are shoppers buying online, and how can you increase your online sales? Check out this infographic for data to help you understand online purchasing habits and grow your business. 

Read More

Three Big Ideas for the 2019 HIRI Summit

What’s Next for Home Improvement: Three Big Ideas

Each Fall, home improvement thought leaders and stakeholders come together in Chicago to dig into challenges facing the industry and pull out actionable insights. We walked away from the 2019 edition of the annual Home Improvement Insights Summit with three big ideas:

Read More

State of the Smart Home Market

A Smart Look at the State of the Smart Home

Whether you’re on a first-name basis with Siri, Alexa or Google, you’ve likely spoken to at least one smart home assistant device in your home or office. According to the 2019 State of the Smart Home report, the United States smart home devices market was worth $10.4 billion in 2018 and is forecasted to exceed $33 billion in 2022.

Read More

Home Improvement’s Only Product-Focused Market Size Study

Home Improvement’s Only Product-Focused Market Size Study

The U.S. Size of Market report, released by the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) in September, is the home improvement industry’s only product-focused market size study. Complete with historical data and five-year forecasts of the consumer and professional markets, it contains both details and big-picture trends from the economic landscape. You’ll learn how current events and policy decisions are projected to affect the home improvement industry.

Read More

Online Home Improvement Products Purchaser

Why, What and How: Consumer Online Shopping Behaviors

Online consumer purchasing habits can’t be evaluated without mentioning the mammoth in room: Amazon. The online retailer has fundamentally changed consumer expectations about how much shipping should cost (free) and how long it should take to arrive after purchase (less than one week). Perhaps most importantly, 33% of consumers indicate Amazon has better prices, helping the retailer hold onto its top spot in the online home improvement products market.

Read More

What do contractors say about online shopping

Infographic: What Contractors Say About Online Shopping

In 2019, the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) partnered with The Farnsworth Group to survey 1,695 contractor professionals, including remodelers and specialty tradespeople, to gain insight into the contractor product market. Questions examined industry behaviors to reveal online purchasing trends. Here are a few highlights:

Read More

Highlights from the HIRI Summit

The last week of September brought in not only the fall, but the largest HIRI event to date, the 2019 HIRI Summit. The annual event held in downtown Chicago brought together industry insiders, thought leaders and some of the largest stakeholders in home improvement and remodeling to discuss current trends, the economic environment, and actionable insights.

There will more coverage of the Summit in coming weeks, but in the meantime, here are some of the top insights.

  • The fundamentals of the home improvement market are strong, and housing stock and homeowner make-up are favorable in keeping the market strong. - Nino Sitchinava, Houzz

  • Discretionary luxury remodeling is slowing with the five product categories facing most severe headwinds: High end cabinets, cladding, flooring, roofing and dimensional lumber. - Todd Tomalak, John Burns Real Estate Consulting

  • Do not underestimate the effects that trade wars have on “bystander” countries and industries—firms can and have paid dearly for assuming they will be unaffected simply because their supply chains and/or end products are not being directly targeted. - David Logan, NAHB

  • It is important to measure the impact the weather has on your business, and you CAN do something about the weather — both in the planning process and during the selling season — to increase sales, minimize costs, and enhance profit. - Scott Bernhardt, Planalytics

  • For home improvement, the shopper’s journey is not just ‘where do I find this?’ but more importantly ‘how do I do this?’ making the role of the associate critical. - Amy Anthony, Lowe's

  • Shopping and purchasing via mobile device is growing rapidly and must be a main strategy at retail. - Brendan Baby, The Home Depot

  • Breaking barriers to entry online requires creative solutions such as how to bring the ‘touch & feel’ from the store into the home, expanding delivery options, reducing shipping expenses, reversing a bad return experience, and capturing the customer’s attention early during their research phase to avoid cart abandonment. - Leen Nsouli, The NPD Group

  • Gen Z is a DIFFERENT generation than Millennials. They look like no other youth generation before. They value pragmatism and security as they embark on changing the world. - Therese Caruso, Zeno Group

  • 80% of organizations expect to compete mainly based on CX this year – Experience-led businesses have higher customer retention, return on spend and higher customer satisfaction rates. - Michele Booth, IPSOS

  • When you talk about sustainability as it relates to home improvement purchases, savings is not an effective message. Try to tie the benefit to health, and give Americans prescriptive steps to take to make it happen. - Suzanne Shelton, Shelton Group.