DIY market in US takes a nosedive as home owners lack funds

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The DIY market in the US has declined 21% in the last five years, according to the latest research from Mintel.

It found more than a quarter (28%) of DIY-ers would like to undertake a major renovation or addition to their home, but don’t have the funds.

The percentage of high-income consumers who can’t afford renovations is even higher. Thirty-two percent of DIY-ers in households making between $75,000-$99,900 say they lack the money to undertake a major home improvement project. Meanwhile, 17% of those surveyed who have completed a DIY project in the last year say they lack the skills to tackle a major renovation and 12% say they don’t have the proper tools.

“When the housing market collapsed many consumers chose to make minor improvements to their homes instead of pursuing large, complicated renovation projects that would drain their wallets,” said Bill Patterson, senior analyst at Mintel. “However, positive fourth-quarter sales suggest a thawing in consumer spending and the release of some pent-up demand.”

According to Mintel research, despite their monetary shortcomings, consumers have a positive view of home improvement projects. In fact, 39% of DIY-ers say making a major home improvement is the best long-term investment they can make.

“We forecast growth to accelerate in 2011 and, presuming a stabilisation of the housing market, to remain positive through 2015,” said Patterson. “Pent-up demand, ongoing need for repair and maintenance, retro-fitting, and renovations from boomers approaching retirement and demand from millennials should all propel DIY spending.”

Furthermore, 61% of consumers say they’ve completed a DIY project in the last 12 months and the average respondent has undertaken a little over four projects.