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02/22/2021

NAHB says lumber prices add $24K to new home construction

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reports that lumber prices have soared more than 180% since last spring.

And the price spike has caused the cost of an average new single-family home to increase by $24,386 since April 17, 2020, according to the NAHB’s standard estimates of lumber used to build the average home.

The association also said that the market value of the average new multifamily home has increased by $8,998 over the same period due to the surge in lumber prices.

Citing the latest Random Lengths prices as of mid-February, the price of framing lumber topped $975 per thousand board feet — a 180% increase since last April when the price was roughly $350 per thousand board feet.

The price increase was calculated by the NAHB based on the softwood lumber that goes into the average new home. Included is the softwood lumber used in structural framing, inducing beams, joists, headers, rafters, and trusses.

Calculations also include sheathing, flooring and underlayment, interior wall and ceiling finishing, cabinets, doors, windows, roofing, siding, soffit and fascia, and exterior features such as garages, porches, decks, railing, fences, and landscape walls.

The softwood products considered include lumber of various dimensions (including any that may be appearance grade or pressure treated for outdoor use), plywood, OSB, particleboard, fiberboard, shakes and shingles, the NAHB said.

Earlier this month, the NAHB said that it wants the U.S. government to push domestic producers to increase production, which could ease lumber shortages. Additionally, the NAHB said that it wants an end to tariffs on Canadian lumber shipments into the United States.

One of the negative ramifications of high lumber prices has been home sales falling through. Builders are then being forced to put projects on hold during a period when housing inventories are at a record low.