Study: Financial Investment Grows, Scope of Kitchen Remodels Shrinks

The latest kitchen trend data from Houzz shows bigger financial investments accompanied by smaller project scopes. But why?

January 10, 2020
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open concept kitchen jessica can 2018 houzz

Open-concept kitchens remain in demand at the moment, but their popularity is waning. (Photo credit: Jessica Cain © 2018 Houzz)

As we move into 2020, consumers continue to invest more in kitchen remodels, but the scope of those projects has shrunk for the second year in a row. According to the recently released 2020 Houzz Kitchen Trends Study, median spending on major kitchen remodels (those that involve the replacement of all cabinets and appliances) completed in mid-2019 sits at $35K, up 17% from a year ago. And while many homeowners do still want complete kitchen overhauls, the breadth of these renovations continues to scale back. 

Compared to 2018 numbers, upgrades to countertops, backsplashes, and faucets or plumbing fixtures fell by 5 percentage points from 2018, while updates to sinks dropped by 7 percentage points. Consistent with the overall reduced scope of kitchen renovations, the popularity of open-concept upgrades has fallen to 46%, from 53% last year. Homeowners are working more often with the space that they've got, and when they do choose to open up the layout, they want it completely integrated with nearby interiors, without any wall or door separation.

feature upgrades during kitchen renovations houzz study

*Percentages reflect proportion of homeowners who have completed, are currently working on or are planning a kitchen renovation during 2019-20 (2020 study), 2018-19 (2019 study), and 2017-18 (2018 study).

The recent data supports the idea that changes to U.S. international trade policy are being felt by remodelers and consumers alike. “It is remarkable to see median spend on kitchen remodels grow by double digits for the third year in a row,”  said Nino Sitchinava, Houzz principal economist, in a press release. “Combined with a two-year decline in the scope of kitchen remodels, spend increases confirm our findings of significant price inflation ... due to changes in international trade policy. Homeowners are dealing with increasing product prices by substituting materials ... highly impacted by tariffs on imported materials from China.”

Head to Houzz for more updates from their 2020 Kitchen Trends Study.

About the Author


About the Author


Kaitlin Schuler is the special projects editor for Pro Remodeler. 

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