Americans Would Rather Renovate Than Buy A New Home

Inflation is forcing homeowners to put renovations on the back burner, but most would still rather renovate than move.

Nearly 60% of respondents to a new survey from Discover Home Loans said they are postponing their renovation projects as projects become more expensive than their budgets. Another 26% will reduce the scope of their projects due to increased costs.

But 79% would still rather renovate their current home than purchase a new one. Just under half of respondents said they are no longer interested in buying a home specifically because of rising interest rates.

“Our survey results show that homeowners are still looking to invest in their homes, despite higher home improvement costs. With large amounts of existing home equity untapped, a home equity loan is an attractive option for many homeowners looking to finance large-scale home improvements or consolidate their debts,” said Rob Cook, vice president of marketing, digital & analytics of Discover Home Loans.

Cosmetic changes that better suit their tastes remain a top priority for those looking to renovate, which homeowners consider investments in their property.

Eco-friendly renovations are also increasingly important, from both an environmental consciousness and cost-saving standpoint. Almost 70% said they are aiming to save money on their energy or water bills through updates.

These renovations can help homeowners who don’t plan to sell now make more in the future. Buyers now prefer green features and are willing to pay more upfront to get them. Half of Realtor agents and brokers found that their clients were somewhat or very interested in sustainability in 2022.

“Sustainability continues to play a growing role in consumers’ purchasing decisions, and this is becoming even more prevalent in the real estate market,” NAR President Leslie Rouda Smith, a Realtor from Plano, Texas, said.