March 29, 2021
Surging lumber prices and shortages in building materials are keeping some homeowners from completing renovations or repairs, forcing them to put off critical projects, the National Association of Home Builders reports. Whereas new-home buyers typically bear the brunt of construction cost increases, current homeowners clamoring to redo their property during the pandemic are feeling the burden, too.
“When talking to prospective clients about projects, lumber pricing is now always part of the discussion, as they are aware of the issue and are concerned about how that may impact the cost of their projects,” Kenneth Kostecki, a Virginia contractor and remodeler, told the NAHB. “Availability of other materials—such as windows, doors, appliances, plumbing fixtures, tiles, etc.—have also been in very short supply. This has led to additional project delays, which has impacted both cash flow and the overall project schedule, meaning that homeowners are left in the middle of a construction project with their house torn apart and unfinished for a longer period of time.”
Jarrett Kravitz, a builder and remodeler from Connecticut, told the NAHB that twice he’s had to put plywood over a customer’s patio door to prevent access to the home’s deck, which had been left unfinished. The surging price of materials to build the deck exceeded the customer’s budget during the project, Kravitz said.
Projects like decks, fences, or finished basements are experiencing delays. “I had a homeowner who was a disabled vet and couldn’t afford a wheelchair ramp due to the rising cost in lumber,” Dennis Sweet, a builder in Michigan, told the NAHB.
Source: “Critical Home Repairs Delayed Because of Sky-High Lumber Prices,” National Association of Home Builders (March 26, 2021)