Unlike recent news that builders continue to face serious difficulties finding lots and labor to build new homes, a survey conducted by NAHB in July shows that shortages of key building materials have actually eased in 2014. In fact, only 15 percent of builders reported some or serious shortages of trusses or clay bricks, the highest incidence among the more than 20 materials builders were asked about. Fourteen percent reported shortages of each windows/doors, gypsum wall board, and cabinets.
For a number of key materials, the share of builders reporting any kind of shortage was lower in July 2014 than in May 2013. For example, while 18 percent of builders reported shortages of plywood, and 22 percent of Oriented Strand Board (OSB) in May 2013, those shares fell to 7 percent and 9 percent, respectively, in July 2014. Likewise, the share of builders reporting a shortage of framing lumber went from 18 percent to 8 percent during this period, while for wall board the share dropped from 20 percent to 14 percent.
The NAHB survey conducted in July confirmed that price increases this year are far less widespread than in 2013. For example, the share of builders reporting price hikes for OSB dropped from 92 percent in 2013 to 68 percent in 2014, for plywood the drop was from 90 percent to 70 percent, and for framing lumber from 92 percent to 73 percent.
For a few materials, the share of builders reporting price increases in 2014 was slightly larger than in 2013: for hardwood flooring, the share rose to 55 percent from 46 percent; for cabinets, up to 63 percent from 57 percent; and for ceramic tiles, up to 40 percent from 34 percent.
View this original post on the NAHB blog, Eye on Housing.