If you need a bout of house envy, there’s no better place to go than Houzz, the increasingly popular platform for finding ideas for your home remodeling projects and the professional that can realize them. Today, however, the service is adding a bit of a reality check to these dreams. The company, which currently sees 14 million users every month, recently surveyed 100,000 homeowners in the U.S. about their projects. It’s now surfacing this information on its site and in its mobile apps to give homeowners a better idea of what remodeling projects in their local areas typically cost.
For example, the tools show homeowners what a kitchen or media room remodel costs in their area. Besides the average, which wouldn’t be all that useful, it also highlights the stats for the lower, middle and top third. Using its existing database, Houzz can also draw upon its huge database of envy-inducing photographs and prices for specific items. This way, for example, you can see what a certain kind of countertop will do to your budget, as well as the pros and cons of the different options, thanks to the growing number of how-to and style guides on the service.
The data the company uses to power this tool, as Houzz co-founder Alon Cohen told me last week, is based on the largest survey ever done on remodeling activity. The company, he said, decided to give this information back to the community. Cohen believes it will help homeowners budget their projects.
Currently, the survey shows, half of the homeowners who start these kinds of projects don’t actually set a budget or go over budget. In addition, the tool should also help the company’s network of more than 230,000 professionals get a better idea of what they can charge and show homeowners how their rates compare to the average.
Houzz plans to update the data over time.