Remodeling Costs Rose Up to 50% in 2020

A woman standing in front of an interior house wall half painted black and half unfinished while holding a paint roller.

The pandemic fueled a remodeling boom as more homeowners sheltered in and looked to redo their home as a new hobby. But the costs of remodeling projects have soared over the past year.

Some house projects have seen prices jump by more than 50% in 2020 compared to 2019. Also, the average spending on a remodel increased from about $9,000 in 2019 to more than $13,000 in 2020, according to a new report from Angi and HomeAdvisor.

“It was a pretty significant pivot,” said Mischa Fisher, chief economist at Angi and HomeAdvisor. “Costs went up, project sizes got larger, people chose to spend more.”

The most popular pandemic house projects were repainting, bathroom remodels, flooring, landscaping, and kitchen remodels, according to the report.

But projects are costing more to do. For example, new cabinet installation saw the largest increase in costs over the last year, jumping 56% higher than in 2019, according to the report.

Surging demand and strained supply chains are causing remodeling costs to increase. Material costs—notably lumber—have seen an uptick in prices as well.

Homeowners looking to spruce up their homes should plan ahead, Paul Emrath, vice president of survey and housing policy research at the National Association of Home Builders, told “Be prepared for possible sticker shock and the process taking a little longer than usual,” Emrath says. “Be aware of the rising trends in all the costs of the remodelers for contractors. It’s not just them being greedy and trying to drive up their profit rate, their costs are all going up as well.”