The DIY Meter | John Burns Real Estate Consulting

The DIY Meter

A survey designed to measure, track, and report on DIY home improvement activity across the US and provide high-quality insights into the types of projects homeowners are engaging with.

Family Handyman, America’s #1 trusted source for DIY and home improvement content reaching 15 million DIYers through various channels, and John Burns Real Estate Consulting, one of the nation’s leading housing and home improvement research firms, have collaborated to design a new survey-based activity gauge for the do-it-yourself (DIY) segment of the US residential repair and remodeling market: The DIY Meter.

Overview of The DIY Meter

The DIY Meter serves as an important resource for building product or material manufacturers, suppliers, and retailers who seek to understand their customers’ needs, wants, motivations, and tipping points at a deeper level. Our executive-oriented report delivers an independent, full-color view of the project, design, and spending trends that drive a significant portion of total demand within the US repair and remodeling industry.

2,388 consumers participated in our inaugural survey from all 50 US states. We will be reporting findings across three types of DIY home improvement projects: repairs, replacements, and remodels.


Quarterly Distribution

Inaugural Report Available Exclusively for Paid Subscribers

Kitchen and bath renovations were the most common DIY remodels as focus shifts from outside to the interior.

Of the 37% of households who recently completed a remodeling project, kitchens, main baths, and secondary baths account for over half of all projects (24%, 20%, and 12% of all remodels, respectively).

Although outdoor living areas are increasingly popular in the overall remodeling segment (including pro jobs), they represent just 17% of remodels among DIYers.

Paint remains the most popular home repair or maintenance project by far.

Painting has long been the leader in DIY activities reported by US households, given its relative low cost and level of complexity, and today is no exception.

Painting represents 17% of all regular home repair/maintenance projects reported by DIYers, nearly double the next highest activity reported: deck or porch repair/maintenance and landscape repair/maintenance (tie), each representing 9% of all home repair/maintenance projects completed by DIYers.

DIYers report indulging in walk-in showers, faucets, and countertops.

Of the places DIYers indulged (or decided to spend more to get “exactly what they wanted”), the top 3 cited were walk-in showers, faucets, and countertops.

Since a major consideration in the decision to DIY is cost savings, we asked DIYers to tell us where they cut back (or spent less to save money). The top 3 areas where households said they cut back were decorative hardware like drawer pulls and knobs, smart home products, and medicine cabinets.

Younger cohorts increasingly find time to DIY, signaling long-awaited millennial-driven DIY boom is here.

Younger cohorts report increasingly having the time to take on home improvement projects is driving them to do more. We expect work-from-home trends and a rising homeownership rate among millennials to benefit the DIY segment for years to come.

About half (52%) of households who recently completed a DIY home improvement project were under 60 years of age, which is in line with pre-pandemic DIY trends.

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About Family Handyman and John Burns Real Estate Consulting

About Family Handyman

Family Handyman is the DIYers best friend, offering a variety of print and digital resources for do-it-yourself homeowners. Our forte is accurate and complete how-to instructions for improving homes, yards and vehicles. We publish Family Handyman magazine, the oldest and largest publication for DIYers, and a variety of newsstand publications in addition to this web site. Family Handyman is part of Trusted Media Brands, which also includes Taste of Home, Birds & Blooms, and Reader’s Digest.

About John Burns Real Estate Consulting

John Burns Real Estate Consulting is an independent research provider and consulting firm focused on the housing industry. John Burns founded the company in 2001 because he saw a need for better analysis on the housing market. The company has grown to a highly passionate team of research analysts and consultants in offices across the country, who work together to provide the most trusted source of US housing analysis. John Burns Real Estate Consulting’s research subscribers receive the most accurate analysis possible to inform their macro investment decisions, and the company’s consulting clients receive specific property and portfolio investment advice designed to maximize profits.

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