Home improvement contractor Modernize's latest Homeowner Index shows more than half of U.S. homeowners cite online articles as research before a home improvement project. Additionally, the index finds that homeowners cite bad communcation skills as the main reason not to choose a contractor. 

“The continued prevalence of homeowners’ online research for information and guidance on their home improvement projects points to the importance for contractors to communicate and make connections online,” says Modernize CEO Jason Polka in a press release about the index findings. “The homeowner’s lack of knowledge about costs reinforces the need for contractors to educate customers about financing so that homeowners can have more confidence. Homeowners go online to get quotes and find ways to pay for their home improvement projects. Contractors should capitalize on those needs by having their websites educate and inform homeowners on the financial options.”

Modernize homeowners index infographic

Key findings from the study include:

  • 51 percent of homeowners utilize online articles as the primary source for research on their home improvement project
  • 35 percent of homeowners spending between one and five hours investigating their project before submitting a lead
  • 28 percent spending more than 10 hours researching on their own
  • When selecting a contractor, homeowners shun bad communication skills, with 23 percent listing that as a factor that would prevent hiring a contractor; by contrast, only six percent listed “Ego” as a factor that would prevent a hiring.
  • Across all trades 42 percent of homeowners would like to finance up to half of their project, and 19 percent would like to finance the entire project.

As an effort to help contractors better serve the residential market, Modernize issues quarterly summaries of its ongoing study of homeowners considering windows, roofing, solar, or HVAC projects.

View the full research from the homeowner's study at modernize.com. The research can be accessed online at modernize.com. The next round of research from the study is expected to be released May 2019.