BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) – Rainy weather slows down several construction projects and adds to an already strained industry grappling with rising building material costs.
Greater Birmingham Association Vice President of Home Builders Joshua Dean said weather is always an issue for contractors and home builders. And while the rainy weather was a factor in completing projects, he said the bigger problem is the supply chain.
“In the past, I’ve signed a contract for remodeling work and we’d be up and running in a week or two. Now I’m going to sign a contract, order everything, get feedback and may not start the project for two or three months because I’m waiting for a critical point, ”said Dean.
Dean said the demand for building has increased because the pandemic has forced many to work from home.
This increased the need for home workplaces and the desire for more home improvement projects.
Deans said at the same time that baby boomers want to downsize their homes while millennials want to buy.
All of this, coupled with supply chain problems and soaring prices for building materials, is costing contractors and homeowners a lot of money.
“The Oriented Strand Board, a plywood material used on the outside of a home and on the roof deck, has increased 700% in the last year. That affected the bottom line. A half-million-dollar house is $ 18,000 more expensive because of the OSB alone. That’s crazy! And when you add the other additional material costs, last year the half-million-dollar house is now $ 550,000 to $ 560,000. “
Dean said the weather can delay projects for days, weeks, or even months, depending on the weather type and duration.
A representative from the association has spoken to leaders in Washington about the construction problems in hopes that prices will drop somewhat.
Dean said he was optimistic that things will change, but he says it will likely take at least a year to 18 months for things to get better.
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