Record Lumber Costs Set to Drive Up Home Prices
Lumber is in short supply as builders head into a spring building season that is expected to be one of the busiest in years. Prices started to rise as wildfires destroyed prime forests and Hurricane Irma temporarily shut down Florida and Georgia mills. A trade dispute between the U.S. and Canada, which supplies one-third of U.S. lumber, exacerbated the issue. And on top of that, a shortage of railcars and trucks has driven up transportation costs. Material prices now rival labor shortages as builders’ main concerns, a National Association of Home Builders survey showed in January. Prices for common building varieties like spruce and southern pine are at or near records, according to price-tracking publication Random Lengths. March-dated lumber futures at the ChicagoMercantile Exchange hit a record of $532.60 per 1,000 board feet last week after climbing more than 50% in 14 months.
Source: An article written by The Wall Street Journal that was posted by the Web site Builderonline.com. Read more.