New Home Remodeling Survey Reveals One-Fifth of Those Who Hired a Builder/Contractor Have Withheld Final Payments Because They Weren't Satisfied with the Work

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Nearly half of those who have ever done a home remodeling project with a predetermined remodeling budget exceed that budget. Men who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home more likely to blame themselves for their dissatisfaction with the process/outcome vs. women, who are more likely to blame their partners

Bolster

With Bolster, remodeling is no longer a roller-coaster ride

Bolster, the newly-launched home remodeling solution, today released the results of a survey on hot button issues people face when remodeling their homes. Harris Interactive, on behalf of Bolster, conducted this survey online within the United States in September 2013 among 3,014 adults ages 18 and older.

Bolster’s survey reveals surprising results about the lack of budget planning, level of stress, and amount of blame those who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home incur when home remodeling.

Most surprising is that over one-third (37%) of those who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home did not have a predetermined budget for their most recent project. Of those who did have a set budget for their most recent project, nearly half (46%) exceed their budget.

In addition, the survey also exposes that men who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home are more likely to blame themselves (17%) rather than their spouse/partner (7%) for their dissatisfaction with the process/outcome of their most recent home remodeling project. 9% of women home remodelers put the blame of dissatisfaction of the most recent project on their spouse/partner, and 13% blame themselves. Either way, those who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home are acknowledging their fair share of the responsibility when things, such as shoddy workmanship and budget overflow, go awry.

With dissatisfaction, of course, comes the question of whether or not to withhold contractors’ payments. Nearly one-fifth (19%) of those dissatisfied with their most recent remodeling project withheld final payments from their builder/contractor, as a result of their dissatisfaction. Surprisingly, 26% of people in the Midwest have withheld final payments as a result of their dissatisfaction.

“Remodeling is a serious financial commitment - no one should have to suffer from financial stress on something as fundamental as improving their home,” said Fraser Patterson, CEO of Bolster. "With Bolster, remodeling is no longer a roller-coaster ride; we enable homeowners to know the true cost of their project before making a commitment and our insurance product protects their budget against unnecessary costs, shoddy workmanship and the never-ending project.”

Here are the key findings of Bolster’s inaugural U.S. home remodeling survey:

Home Remodeling Stress
Among U.S. adults, home remodeling is an extremely stressful financial event:
-- 85% of Americans consider doing a major remodeling project to their home to be at least somewhat stressful, more than those who consider taking out a mortgage (80%) to be stressful and even more than those who consider saving for college (66%) to be stressful.
-- 60% say taking out a mortgage and doing a major home remodeling project are extremely/very stressful or stressful financial events, vs. 46% who say saving for college is.
-- 71% of women ages 35-44 found home remodeling at least stressful vs. 59% of women ages 55 and older.
-- 63% of singles found home remodeling at least stressful, vs. 57% of those who are married.

Most Frequent Remodelers
U.S. adults over 45 years old, those who live in the Midwest and those who are either married or divorced/separated/widowed are the groups most likely to have ever done a remodeling project to their home.
-- 61% of U.S. adults who are from the Midwest have done a remodeling project, vs. 51% from the West and 50% from the South.
-- Men and women are equally as likely to have done a remodeling project to their home in the past (55% and 53%, respectively).
-- 63% of women who are 55+ have ever remodeled.
-- 66% of those who are married have done a remodeling project.

Home Remodeling Spending
Among those who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home…
-- Men spent more on their most recent home remodeling project when compared to women (an average of $13,800 vs. an average of $8,900, respectively).
-- Roughly one in 8 (12%) home remodelers spent over $20,000 on their most recent home remodeling project.

Home Remodeling Budget
-- 63% of those who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home had a set budget for their most recent project.
-- 46% of remodelers with a budget exceed that budget.
-- 17% of those with a budget, went over budget by 11-45% and 7% exceeded their budget by 46-100%.

Who Is to Blame
Among those who have ever done a home remodeling project to their home…
-- Most are likely to blame themselves and/or their partners for their dissatisfaction with a remodeling project as opposed to a general or specific contractor, an architect, real estate agent, home decorator or interior designer or someone else.
-- 15% blamed their contractor(s) for their dissatisfaction.

Survey Methodology
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Bolster from September 25 – 27, 2013 among 3,014 adults ages 18 and older, among whom 1,556 have ever done a remodeling project to their home. This online survey is not based on probability and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Katherine Hurd of Moxie Communications Group at 703-597-6705 or Katherine(at)moxiegrouppr(dot)com.

About Bolster

Bolster improves the home remodeling experience by providing an insurance product that guarantees the outcome of every remodeling project. Bolster helps homeowners learn the true cost of their project in advance, vets and underwrites their contractor of choice, and provides expert project-management advice. Bolster was launched in 2013 by former general contractor and home remodeling expert Fraser Patterson and is based in New York City. For more information, please visit http://www.getbolster.com.

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Katherine Hurd
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