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Lumber prices soar, impacts builders and home owners

Published: May. 3, 2021 at 6:40 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - It’s not only getting more expensive to buy a house, it’s getting more expensive to build or remodel one as well. That’s because of a lumber shortage here in Michigan and other parts of the country.

“We still built the deck but it cost us four times as much as it would have last fall,” Lance Glazier said.

Lancer Glazier planned on building a new deck last fall but his order was so delayed it ended up getting cancelled, so he pushed his project back to this spring and it cost way more than he expected.

“I wasn’t happy about it at all again when your budgeting spring projects you had an idea of what your going do and it ends up costing you four times as much and it ends up taking away from next spring,” Glazier said.

“Anyone doing a home renovation project or anyone looking at building a new home or remodeling is going to be impacted. Prices in the last year for a typical new single family home has added 36,000 to the cost of a typical home,” said CEO of Home Builders Associations, Bob Filka.

And it’s not just clients getting upset, one local builder said his business is down over 50% because of the lumber prices going up.

“It’s affected us quite a bit the last 12 months, we had to increase our cost. We do single-family residential, the average cost is up 15-20% than it was a year, year and a half ago,” said Vice President of Russell Builders Inc., Nate Russell.

Russell told News 10 a lot of clients are having sticker shock once he gives them a price estimate on building a new single-family home.

“The last ten or 12 quotes I have done I probably had two call me back the others were too scared and went elsewhere. The two people that called me back I tried to negotiate but there is now wiggle room,” Russell said.

The Home Builders Association of Michigan told News 10 they did not expect this to happen.

“I think everyone in the industry was caught off guard by how much demand building and remodeling would happen during the pandemic,” Filka said.

“We’ve had shortages before and prices before but nothing like lumber going up triple than what it was,” Russell said.

The Home Builders Association told News 10 that the low interest rates have kept the demand for building and remodeling high.

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