Posted by: jeb1 | October 25, 2010

The Case for a Building Boom

People decide to remodel their homes, not government agencies. Even so, a report released yesterday that argues for infrastructure investment makes a strong indirect case for home-remodeling investments too. (The report, “An Economic Analysis of Infrastructure Investment,” was issued by by the Department of the Treasury and the Council of Economic Advisors.)

In his column in yesterday’s Washington Post, Ezra Klein wrote that infrastructure investment — and, by extension, home-remodeling investment — “creates middle-class jobs for workers in a sector with high unemployment, and it puts them to work doing something that we actually need done at a moment when doing it is cheaper than it ever will be again.”

The case:

  • Construction workers need jobs. In August, construction unemployment was 17 percent. More than 20 percent of the eight million jobs lost in the two years after December 2007 were in the construction sector.
  • It’s cheap to borrow.
  • Construction materials are priced well below their recent norms.

Plus, there’s always this:

Not spending on infrastructure repairs today means having to spend it tomorrow. The same can be said for remodeling improvements.

See this column in the Washington Post for a direct link to the report cited. 

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