Property owners keep remodeling at a healthy pace

REAL ESTATE WATCH

August 25, 2002

The nation's home and rental property owners continued to upgrade their properties at a healthy clip in the second quarter, with no letup from the first quarter's pace, according to the National Association of Home Builders' Remodeling Market Index, released last week.

The index also found that remodelers in some markets are reining in their expectations.

The index has two related parts, one that measures current market conditions and another that measures future market expectations.

The index for current conditions in the remodeling market held steady at 52.7 for a second consecutive quarter. It has risen seven points from a slowdown in residential remodeling last fall and is within three points of its solid 55 reading during last year's first half.

In spite of the market's stability this year, many remodelers have apparently tempered their expectations. The index gauging market expectations fell more than two points to 52.2 in the second quarter, with remodelers in the South and West revising their expectations downward most from those of the first quarter. Remodelers in the Northeast were slightly less optimistic, and those in the Midwest were a little more upbeat.

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