With everyone stuck at home during the pandemic, a substantial amount of homeowners are undertaking home improvement projects. In particular, do-it-yourself (DIY) projects are a popular choice, as people use some of their extra time at home to undertake renovation and remodeling projects on their to-do lists.
Photo: courtesy Paolese | stock.adobe.com
The numbers don’t lie. According to a recent Ally Lending survey, six in 10 consumers made home improvements. Of those making improvements, 76% went the DIY route without hiring a contractor. Most consumers (60%), completed improvements in the past 12 months, and two-thirds of those who made home improvements believe their improvements will increase the value of their homes.
It’s clear that value is a primary driver. Money, along with many other factors, play a significant role in why consumers also choose to DIY over contractors in the first place.
So, as a home improvement professional, what can you do to compete? Emphasizing your speed, equipment, and professional capabilities in your marketing and sales collateral can be a differentiator, and offering consumer financing options can seal the deal.
A big question many homeowners may ask as they prepare for a renovation, is when to DIY, and when to hire a home improvement professional. Understanding the rationale for why a homeowner may elect to go the DIY route can hopefully go a long way in ensuring they choose you instead.
There are tradeoffs in time, money, and results, but confidence and budget play the most critical roles with any project. As with many sizable expenses, affordability can be a concern, but recent data indicates many homeowners are looking to make more substantial changes in the coming year.
Looking ahead, 2022 will be another busy year for home improvements, with more homeowners considering larger projects. Over the next 12 months, most (58%) are planning improvements, including cosmetic updates (41%) or significant remodeling and renovations (13%) focused on bathrooms, kitchens, and outdoor space. According to the same Ally survey, of those planning to make at least one improvement, 86% have a budget of $25,000 or less.
This trend will continue into 2022. Of those who made improvements in 2021, most (65%) had a budget of less than $10,000, and 78% spent less than $15,000. For those indicating they will make improvements in 2022, 78% have a budget of less than $15,000 and 63% have a budget of less than $10,000. With this consistent focus on larger and more extensive projects over the next year, consumers may be looking for alternatives to DIY that still address their concerns about confidence and budget.
Play to your strengths
Homeowner confidence in their capability to complete a DIY project can play a part in whether they’ll choose DIY when it comes to home improvement projects. So, remember, as a home improvement professional, you can stress the “three Ts” when competing against DIY: time, tools, and talent.
Photo: courtesy Ozgur Coskun | stock.adobe.com
Theoretically, homeowners can save money and time with DIY, but sometimes, the opposite is true. According to Ally’s study, 76% of those making improvements reported issues, and the most frequently cited issue (37%) was work going past the scheduled date of completion. In addition, nearly one-third of those who made improvements reported going over budget. If a homeowner is unprepared and doesn’t have the tools or knowledge needed, there’s always a chance personal projects could face cost overruns and stretch out much further than they planned. Even worse? They may have to redo faulty work or contact a home improvement professional to fix unfortunate mistakes. These additional steps might cost them more than they initially budgeted for.
Keeping this in mind, you might emphasize your speed and efficiency in your marketing, website, and communications. Remember, home improvement pros (such as yourself) who work on homes daily have the expertise and skill sets to create the highest-quality results. You also have the capability to complete projects on time and correctly with the right tools at the ready.
Highlighting this turn-key capacity could go a long way in securing home improvement contracts and projects for you and your team.
Make an offer they can’t refuse
Confidence in your proficiency is essential, but the cost can also be a decisive factor. So, as a home improvement professional, you need to provide options and flexibility to compete.
You can convert more DIY-intent customers this year by adding consumer financing to your portfolio of products and services. With a financing option like Ally Lending, homeowners can have a professional complete their project using a budget-friendly finance solution.
It’s a win-win. Customers can tackle the more involved and costly projects they plan this year with this flexibility in hand. And these additional purchasing power and budget-friendly finance solutions also may also generate more sales and contracts for your team.
Give yourself the edge
By offering consumer financing solutions like those from Ally Lending, you can offer a cost-flexible choice that could help you compete against current DIY home improvement trends. And combining this option with a confident approach in your marketing and communications that stresses your time, tools, and talent can give you the edge.
All loans are unsecured personal loans originated by Ally Bank, Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender. Subject to credit review and approval.