Home owners in the typical zip code area spent a total of $1.9 million to improve their homes in 2013, according to new zip-level estimates developed by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). This works out to about $1,400 per owner-occupied home within the zip code (based on the median across all zip codes estimated by NAHB).
The estimates are based on a statistical model developed by NAHB, using data from the HUD/Census Bureau American Housing Survey) that relates remodeling expenditures to the number of owner-occupied homes in the area, the share of those homes built in the 1960s and 1970s, the average home owners’ income, and the share of owners who are college educated. The model is applied to data from the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, using geographic boundaries developed by the Census Bureau to capture zip code mailing addresses.
The estimates of remodeling by zip code were produced by NAHB economists for NAHB Remodelers. Those who are not members of NAHB Remodelers and have questions about the zip-code level data can contact NAHB Remodelers staff.
While the median level of spending on improvements is $1,400 per owner-occupied home, it can be as high as $5,000 in particular cases. Estimates for the top five zip code areas in the country by this measure are shown below.
These five zip codes are located in the suburbs of San Francisco, Manhattan, and Long Island. They’re characterized by home owners who are 73 to 93 percent college educated with high average incomes (roughly at or above $400,000). The first and fifth zip code on the list also have a high percentage of homes built in the 1960s and 1970s, an age when the NAHB model indicates homes undergo above-average remodeling.
The map below shows average spending on improvements per owner-occupied home by zip codes.
For convenience, the estimates have also been aggregated up to the state level: