According the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), remodeling hit its highest point in five years during fourth-quarter of 2011. NAHB measures remodeling sentiment with its Remodeling Market Index (RMI), which rose from 41.7 for third quarter to 46.6 in the fourth quarter. The index uses a scale of 1 to 100 to represent the actions and expectations of the population of American remodelers, with different weights applied to owned homes and rental apartments.

The RMI is a quarterly survey released to approximately 2,000 remodelers who measure demand in their local market for major (in excess of $25,000) and minor (less than $25,000) remodeling efforts, as well as future business expectations. RMI positions of both major and minor additions rose above 50, which indicates that more remodelers are saw business rise in fourth quarter 2011 over the previous quarter.

The NAHB is glad that 2011 ended on a strong note for remodelers, and understands that consumers are living in their homes longer than they used to. This longer occupancy translates to more improvements over the lifetime of the home.

The rise in the RMI is another sign that the housing industry is on the path to recovery, even with the continued strain of stringent lending requirements and economic uncertainty. The RMI’s measure of future expectations also enjoyed gains, with “calls for bids” and “appointments for proposals” both rising above a rating of 50, though “committed work” expectancy for the next quarter hovers just above 30.

For more information about the remodeling and the RMI, be sure to check their website.

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