Last year, with pandemic-fueled shortages and a sharp increase in people building or renovating, costs for construction skyrocketed, and they still remain high, but they are coming back down.
At the height of the shortages, a standard 8-foot 2×4 board cost over eight times (more in some parts of the country!) what it did prior to the pandemic. But, with suppliers reopening and demand dropping as people are able to travel freely and get out of their home, costs have steadily decreased everywhere, and in the case of lumber, they plummeted back down and now cost just a bit more than they did pre-COVID 19.
That means that now is the time to get started on construction. No matter how large or small your project is, material costs strongly affect your final cost.
Why Not Keep Waiting for Construction Costs to Fall?
Prices in the last year were wildly abnormal. Last year was a unique challenge both to material production and the worldwide supply chain, along with a soaring demand as people spent more time in their homes. This caused simultaneous drops in supply and an unheard-of demand at the same time.
Decisions shouldn’t be made based on an outlier.
Because materials are all based on market cost, they tend to go up over time, rather than down. The only real exception is when a new product is introduced, these tend to be very expensive at first, then come down in cost over time.
But for everything else, it’s usually better to start planning today rather than waiting and hoping that costs will drop.
What If Construction Costs Go Up In The Future?
We can’t predict the future, so most contractors will immediately buy materials as soon as you’ve signed. This allows us to ensure that our costs and profits stay the same, and that our guarantee to you isn’t dependent on a volatile market.
We always recommend asking your contractor to ensure that they’re buying materials as soon as possible to guarantee that your costs don’t rise over time.
What About Labor Costs?
Labor costs have been increasing over the last year, and the cost of labor, like materials, is variable, but it’s usually less volatile.
And because contractors hire their own workers, we’re able to have some control over it. Unlike materials, where multi-billion dollar companies and international supply chains can change everything, labor is something we work out locally and individually with our subcontractors and laborers, allowing us some flexibility that materials just don’t permit.
So Now Is The Time to Get Started on Construction?
Right now is a great time to get started with a construction project, especially as we move into the slower season over the fall, which will decrease costs for materials and labor.
While we don’t have a crystal ball, we do know that for right now the pieces are falling in place for prices to continue falling.
If high prices have been holding you back, now is probably the time to start making a few phone calls to your local contractors and ask for a few quotes.