Soaring lumber prices add $ 119 / month to new apartment rents

The continued surge in lumber prices dramatically increases the cost of new construction of single-family homes and multi-family buildings, reports the National Association of Home Builders.

Wood prices have tripled in the past 12 months, adding $ 35,872 to the price of the average newly built single-family home, the association’s economists calculated. This rise in the price of lumber also added nearly $ 13,000 to the market value of an average new multi-family home, they said, which translates into households paying an extra $ 119 per month to rent a new one. apartment.

The latest Random Lengths prices for the week ending April 23 show the price of lumber close to $ 1,200 per thousand board feet – up nearly 250% from last April, when the price was around $ 350 per thousand board feet.

The NAHB attributes the peaks in wood costs to four factors:

  • Reduced production at national sawmills thanks to household orders last year and social distancing measures.
  • National sawmills did not increase production last year when it became clear that the housing market would withstand the pandemic and even strengthen because of it.
  • Mills did not anticipate the additional demand caused by homeowners buying lumber from big box stores for DIY projects and other renovations.
  • Tariffs on imports of Canadian lumber have “exacerbated” this price volatility.

The association says it has aggressively lobbied the Biden administration to “deal with rising timber prices and take steps to ensure an adequate supply of timber and other building materials” on these issues.

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