Construction Industry Material Prices

Construction Industry Material Prices

It’s not just construction industry news. Hardly a day passes without national and local news referencing the 2021 soaring materials prices. Our country’s financial well-being is driven by building permit applications, infrastructure construction, and more. The construction industry is a figurehead for economic measurables in this country.

Percentages of Construction Industry Materials Increases

Numbers don’t lie unless you’re Democrats and Republicans comparing the state of the economy. Even then, they don’t “lie.” Politicians use different numbers to support their required end results.

You can trust these numbers, shared by ABC chief economist Anirban Basu. These percentages peaked in May, so June actually showed some improvement.

Percentage of increases in construction industry materials:

  • 186.7% – Crude petroleum
  • 154% – Softwood lumber
  • 100.1% – Unprocessed energy materials
  • 90.3% – Natural gas
  • 75.6% – Steel mill products
  • 62.8% – Iron/steel
  • 31.4% – Nonferrous wire/cable
  • 18.3% – Fabricated structural metal/metal products
  • 12.6% – Asphalt, tar roofing, siding
  • 3.1% – Concrete/concrete products
  • 2.2% – Plumbing fixtures/fittings

The biggest price increases were in energy supplies, but softwood lumber skyrocketed. The National Association of Home Builders says lumber prices are adding about $35,872 to the price of residential new-home builds. However, that also adds $12,966 to multifamily rental homes, which translates into a $119/month rent increase.*

“Global supply chains should become more orderly over time as the pandemic fades into memory,” said Basu. Still, home sales are expected to rise. “This means project owners who delayed…construction for a few months in order to secure lower bids may come to regret that decision,” Basu concluded.

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As of June 23, the price (of softwood lumber) has fallen below $900 per board foot, down about 49% in less than two months. 

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