Irish homeowners spent €11bn on renovations in past year, research shows

Research by insurer Aviva suggests as many as 1.5m people carried out work over the year

There was a 20 per cent decrease in the number of properties available to rent in the second quarter of the year in 16 areas of the State examined by the Simon Communities of Ireland as part of a periodic survey. Photograph: iStock

There was a 20 per cent decrease in the number of properties available to rent in the second quarter of the year in 16 areas of the State examined by the Simon Communities of Ireland as part of a periodic survey. Photograph: iStock

 

Some 1.5 million homeowners here have spent more than €11 billion in total in the past year on home improvements, while more than 861,000 homeowners have plans to do more such work, research by Aviva Insurance Ireland suggests.

The insurer said the trend was “undoubtedly driven” by the extended periods of time that people have spent in their homes since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The individual spend for 72 per cent of the homeowners surveyed for the firm who had engaged in home improvement in the past year came in under €5,000, while almost one-quarter spent anywhere from €5,000-€20,000. Just 5 per cent of the homeowners in question spent more than €20,000 but less than €50,000, with only 1 per cent spending more than €50,000.

The survey, commissioned by Aviva and carried out by iReach, involved a total of 1,200 respondents and sought to examine the home improvement experiences of homeowners in the past year.

One in five respondents to the survey said that on top of work done they have further renovation plans for their homes in the coming year – from painting, to home offices, to new windows.

Decoration projects

The research found that two-thirds of homeowners have embarked on home decoration and renovation projects in the past year.

A further 18 per cent of those surveyed said they had not done any work in their homes to date but have plans to, with only 8 per cent having no plans to undertake any renovation work or redecoration projects.

The majority of those who have undertaken work in their homes have been aged 35-54 years.

Of those who carried out work, a significant number of people (43 per cent) said the work was carried out due to the increased time spent at home, while almost one-quarter said it was to make better use of space or to create more space, and one in five said it was because it had been more financially feasible to make changes to homes on the back of money saved over the course of the year.

One in 10 said the work was carried out due to “sheer boredom”, while 6 per cent had had a home office constructed so they could keep home and work life separate.

Of those who have not carried out any home improvements, half said various lockdowns were delaying their plans, while one in five said they could not find tradespeople. The remainder (28 per cent) said they were waiting until they have more time available.