The World’s Leading Home + Housewares Show

March 2–4, 2025 | McCormick Place | Chicago, IL

The World’s Leading Home + Housewares Show
March 2—4 | McCormick Place | Chicago, IL

Inflation may be causing consumers to scale back their home improvement projects or turn to DIY. But when it comes to upgrading our living spaces, home improvement projects are currently the overwhelming choice over buying new homes.

And that creates a potential opportunity for makers and sellers of housewares. You know how it’s hard to eat just one potato chip out of a bag, asks Joe Derochowski, Circana vice president and home industry advisor? Once we get started upgrading our space—even if it’s a small, budget-conscious project—it’s easy to want to keep going with new or upgraded housewares or home goods to go along with it.

During times of economic uncertainty, consumers typically turn to incremental fixups and improvements rather than taking out loans for big items or projects. The key for home and housewares sellers is having new on-trend features/styles/colors to entice buyers, keeping prices affordable and positioning such items as small indulgences.

Improving the Homes We Have

Inflation is affecting home improvement plans but they’re still popular, according to a survey from Discover Home Loans: 59% of respondents have decided to postpone home projects and 26% have reduced the scope of these projects in the face of increased costs. That said, there’s still strong demand for home renovation as 79% of homeowners surveyed prefer to renovate their current space over buying a new home.

Today’s Homeowner found similar sentiments in a January survey. About half of homeowners said they’re adjusting their home improvement spending due to the economic climate, but nine out of 10 homeowners said they still have projects planned for 2023.

More DIY

What’s one of the biggest ways to cut costs on a home improvement project? Do it yourself. Seventy-one percent of respondents in the Today’s Homeowner survey said inflation has led them to tackle a home improvement project themselves rather than hire a professional. That trend was even more pronounced for Gen Z and Millennials; 76% of those 18-24 years old said they’ve chosen DIY.

According to Numerator, the most common reason for recent home improvement purchases were to begin a small DIY project (29%) and to replace a damaged/broken item (24%).

Top Home Improvement Projects

Updating appliances, bathroom remodels and kitchen remodels appear to offer the most opportunity in 2023.

According to Discover’s survey, routine maintenance is the top reason (38%) for home improvement projects in the coming year—yet it’s actually a 4% decrease from last year’s survey.

Coming in next at 34% is a tie between updating appliances (up 3% from last year) and remodeling a bathroom (up 5%). Those two projects are followed by refinishing or replacing flooring (31%, flat vs last year) and remodeling a kitchen (30%, up 2%).



The International Housewares Association (IHA) has just released its 2023 IHA Market Watch Report, which is designed to assist the home and housewares industry with connecting to consumer values.

Access the HomePage News 2023 Consumer Outlook Surveycommissioned in partnership with IHA—for more insights on outdoor living and 17 other home and housewares categories.


Get Ready for The Inspired Home Show 2024!

March 17-19, 2024