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3 Stats Showing Off Home Improvement's Resilience

A new report gives specialty contractors something to be optimistic about

July 27, 2020
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roofing and other home improvement verticals have been resilient during covid-19

Remodeling is resilient. In the past two recessions—in 2001 and again in 2008-2009—while the building side of construction took hit after hit, particularly in the most recent (hence the term “housing crisis”), the remodeling side has remained relatively undisrupted. After hitting its trough in 2009, annual remodeling spending growth experienced six consecutive years of increases. 

harvard JCHS remodeling's economic resilience

We know the coronavirus has hit remodeling—and not some but most. It’s slowed business and forced layoffs. We know it’s complicated jobsites and materials deliveries. 

But we also know remodeling is resilient, and in Jobber’s recent spring Home Service Economic Report, the scheduling platform and app developer provided insight into how COVID-19 has impacted remodeling and we were pleased to find these three positive stats. 

1. Home services are bouncing back (for now, at least) 

Compared to other industries, home services—which Jobber defines as home cleaning professionals, outdoor and landscaping professionals, and contractors—while having felt a negative impact from the virus initially, has since rebounded. In June, home services saw a 21-percentage point swing in monthly year-over-year revenue increases. 

comparing home services and home improvement to other industries

Specific to the contracting component of home services, while the vertical’s unemployment rate fell sharply with the introduction of widespread quarantining and remains negative compared to the same time last year, it is 3.6 percentage points higher than the country’s average. 

unemployment for specialty contractors

2. New work up 

New work was the first casualty of the coronavirus. In March, new work for specialty contractors, including electric, plumbing, and HVAC, fell slightly, by 4% year over year, and then in April significantly (-23%). But in a testament to the industry’s resilience, by June year-over-year monthly new job gains were 14%.  

new jobs for specialty contractors during COVID-19

3. Revenue's up, too 

Correspondingly, revenue fell and soon after increased with new jobs, falling 15% year over year in April but increasing 10% year over year by June. 

median revenue for home improvement contractors during covid-19

About the Author


About the Author


James McClister is managing editor for Professional Remodeler.

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