Last month in this space, I reviewed a series of market projections for 2014 from Harvard University as well as the industry’s leading associations.
Future Vision of Our Young Leaders
We asked our Young Leaders what they see as the biggest changes coming down the line for the remodeling industry.
It will become much more tightly regulated and liability issues will fall on the shoulders of remodelers. I have high hopes that the pressure that will be placed on the remodeling community will result in a massive and sweeping change in the way that work is performed and the operations of the businesses, requiring professionalism and solid business operations and accountability.
I foresee the industry trending toward urban infill rather then mass development. In our community, this means a lot of the homes on the outskirts of our downtown area that were built in the '60s and '70s will be the decade's new hotbed of remodeling. Urban sprawl has begun to slow down, and new home construction will continue to decrease, opening the door to more widespread opportunities for remodelers.
Increased consolidation and green becoming mainstream
Two of them are tighter regulations (lead paint, permits, etc.) and more green building. These items coupled with a tighter economy are going to make it ever more difficult for unorganized companies or ones that charge too little to survive. The cost of doing business is going up, and you had better be efficient and prepared.
Dependence on advancements in technology and the green industry will require contractors to stay ahead of the curve. Constant research on new products and education for employees across the board will be a must to remain successful.
Over the next decade, the new housing market will likely not see significant gain to reach the record high levels of the past few years. Therefore, remodeling will continue to increase as homeowners stay in their homes longer. This will also lead to the increase in spaces that are far more customized for the homeowners because they're not concerned about selling in three to five years as they have been in the past. Those who are in their homes for the long haul are willing to make these very specific, very unique changes that serve them and their families well.
I would say that it is only going to get better as remodeling companies continue to educate themselves and partner with better suppliers.
I expect more of a female presence in the industry over the next 10 years. I expect young women to aspire to be in this industry instead of fall into it. It's useful, if not necessary, to have women in the industry, but besides that, the secret will get out that the world of remodeling is exciting and challenging and filled with remarkably humble and passionate people.
I expect that due to changes in government regulation, remodelers will band together more than ever before to present a stronger, more professional industry voice.
I believe that new technologies will help produce greater efficiencies in all areas of business, but the same new technologies will also make the industry more competitive.
Consumers will have relevant information at their fingertips, forcing contractors to differentiate with service, methodology and technology.
1. Increased consolidation for more efficiency, to leverage alliances with subcontractors and manufacturers and to keep up with changes. 2. An increase in full-service remodelers. Given the current economic climate, more remodelers are seeing the value of having a balanced portfolio to reduce their risk/dependence on good economic times. They will be adding handyman services, etc. 3. More focus on creating businesses. The size and potential of the remodeling industry is increasingly drawing business people and interest from outside of traditional remodeling channels.