Homeowners spent a lot more time at their residences after stay-at-home orders were enacted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With many looking for ways to keep busy, they sought to make some improvements to their living spaces. A LendingTree report
revealed that folks with the means used home equity loans for improvements during the pandemic period.
The report revealed that across 50 metros, 45.9% of home equity loans were used for home improvements. Out of these metros, Milwaukee, Louisville, and Columbus are the locales with the largest share of home equity loans being used for improvements. San Jose, Hartford and Raleigh are the three on the lowest end of the spectrum. The report does note that since January, home equity loan applications have fallen. However, those who did apply for these loans largely allocated them to home improvement.
"The share of home equity loans designated for home improvement grew from January 2020 to April 2020 in all but eight metros. The average growth rate ... for renovations across all 50 of the nation’s largest metros was 25%," according to LendingTree.