Toronto based real estate consultants, Altus, report that a growing number of Canadians are renovating their homes. The increase is often referred to as the ‘HGTV effect’, a hat tip to the home improvement TV channel.
There does appear to be a correlation; the TV channel launched just before the start of a fifteen year period of year-on-year increases in renovations. The sector is now worth over $63 billion a year and spending is not only on essential repairs. The increase can be partly attributed to there being more housing now than in the 90s, but there is also real evidence that homeowners are keen to have a new home, without actually moving.
Spending on renovations does not appear to be dependent on property equity; only a quarter of the work is funded through borrowing according to Bank of Canada stats.
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