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NAHB data pinpoint remodeling markets

A new index created by the National Home Builders Association (NAHB) shows county-by-county estimates for remodeling expenditures in the United States. According to the data, Los Angeles County, Calif., leads the country with $9.4 billion spent on remodeling. Other counties in the top five include Cook County, Ill.; Orange and San Diego counties, Calif.; and Maricopa County, Ariz.

"Total remodeling spending in a particular county is most strongly related to the number of homeowners in the county," said NAHB chief economist David Crowe. "On the other hand, we found that remodeling per home depends upon factors such as the share built before 1980, the share owned by married couples and, most significantly, the average value of the homes."

The NAHB created the index by analyzing local remodeling based on home and homeowner characteristics data from the American Housing Survey, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau. It is then applied to every county's homes and homeowners, which the Census Bureau released late last year in its American Community Survey. 

Nantucket County, Mass., leads the nation on remodeling spending per home with $9,369. Other counties in the top five include New York County (Manhattan) and three counties in the San Francisco metropolitan area. In each of these counties, remodeling is more than $8,000 per owner-occupied home. The average across all counties nationwide is $2,085. Homeowners are typically spending about 1.3% of the home’s value on remodeling each year.

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