Architecture Billings Index Softened to 48.5 in March
Washington, DC, May 24, 2023-The Architecture Billings Index score for March decreased from 50.4 in March to 48.5 in April (any score below 50 indicates a decrease in firm billings), according to a report released today from The American Institute of Architects (AIA).
However, firms reported that inquiries into new projects accelerated slightly to 53.9, while most firms continued to report a decline in the value of new design contracts, with a score of 49.8.
“The ongoing weakness in design activity at architecture firms reflects clients’ concerns regarding the economic outlook,” said AIA chief economist Kermit Baker Hon. AIA, Ph.D. “High construction costs, extended project schedules, elevated interest rates, and growing difficulty in obtaining financing are all weighing on the construction market.”
Despite the recent softness in billings, many firms are cautiously optimistic about this year. As the construction market cools, construction costs and schedules are expected to ease, which may make some projects more feasible. In addition, firms will continue to be able to capitalize on opportunities related to green building and energy efficiency initiatives that have increased over the past few years.
Regional averages were as follows: Midwest (51.2); West (49.3); South (48.7); Northeast (47.2).
The sector index breakdown was mixed practice (firms that do not have at least half of their billings in any one other category) (52.1); commercial/industrial (51.8); institutional (50.6); multi-family residential (41.5).
The project inquiries index was 53.9, and the design contracts index was 49.8.
Related Topics:The American Institute of Architects