By Sheree R. Curry

More consumers are dusting off their cordless drills, tape measures and jigsaws, or at least are shelling out for paint, spackle or flooring products. Home remodeling is on an upswing, according to the National Association of the Remodeling Industry. A byproduct of rising home sales during this past year, new homeowners are spending more at big-box stores such as Lowe’s and Home Depot for their DIY projects. Home sellers are also adding to the increased sales at home improvement stores as they spruce up a home before putting it on the market. TV programmers, meanwhile, have been paying attention — and adding new home-improvement series or renewing old ones.

“Homeowners are more comfortable investing in their homes right now,” said Eric S. Belsky, managing director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. “Consumer confidence scores are back to pre-recession levels, and since recent homebuyers are traditionally the most active in the home improvement market, the growth in sales of existing homes is providing more opportunities for these improvement projects.”

Home Depot and Lowe’s both reported favorable earnings in August, with Lowe’s saying that its net earnings rose 26 percent from a year ago and Home Depot recording its highest number of transactions in company history, according to MarketWatch. The unfortunate aftermath of natural disasters — from hurricanes to tornadoes or wildfires — have also sent homeowners to the home improvement stores.
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