Home and Tiny-House: Why are building materials becoming so expensive and scarce?

The current health crisis has led to material shortages and rising prices for several months. Not to mention the extended delivery times and of course consumer expectations.

And with the enthusiasm they know, tiny houses are not left out in the construction and ultimately in the delivery times. Builders of tiny houses or individuals who build it themselves, the shortage affects them too. Companies are sometimes forced to take huge risks in order to keep their customers happy. But where are these bottlenecks and this rise in current prices coming from?

What is increasing?

According to Baluchon, the French manufacturer of tiny houses, it takes several months to get windows or certain panels. The insulation made of cotton, linen and hemp is completely sold out. The rising prices are even more meaningful:

32% for the spruce floor 22% for the cladding

As for the price of the Douglas fir, impressive! When commodity indices rise, companies are the first to suffer!

What explanations for this new situation?

Even if it is quite easy to put this on the “back” of the Covid19 crisis and this is one of the reasons for this increase, it is not the only one responsible. And one of the other officials would be none other than the former President of the United States, Donald Trump, who was banned from social networks for a few months. He’s actually enacted a tax on Canadian timber (20%). When we know that most houses use wood and American production is insufficient, builders turn to Europe. The selling price in North America increases inappropriately.

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Inrainbows

And in Europe, China buys around 25% of our French oaks … That is 10 more than 10 years ago … As a result, French timber producers are working on time, even very tightly, and their stocks are rapidly melting. They therefore find it difficult to supply French companies. For 5 years the price of French oak has increased by 35%!

Other reasons for this near-deficiency

Nature also has something to do with this shortage and rising prices. Do you remember the terrible fires in Australia or the frequent hurricanes in the United States … Millions of trees die every time and turn to buyers to Europe! And the terrible processing of demand, which is greater than supply, is causing prices to skyrocket, as in all markets!

What about the Covid?

If there is one sector that did not experience the crisis in France during this pandemic, it is still the construction industry! Municipalities, regions, departments, developers, all used the quiet surroundings on the streets to carry out work … As for the DIY enthusiasts on Sundays, even in these limited periods of time, they started renovating, decorating, etc … city residents who needing nature have turned to tiny houses. Companies that manufacture wood and other materials were not spared the Covid and therefore had to work by reducing their staff or digging into their inventory.

And orders keep coming back!

All sites are open, the workers are working at full speed, but the materials may be running low. So companies adapt! They stock a little but not too much either, constantly checking their selling prices, deadlines, etc. Without forgetting to develop precise communication with customers to avoid them waiting too long or impatiently.

We do not yet know what consequences all these factors will really have on the availability of certain materials or on their future prices. But construction and construction professionals are concerned. Although they are not affected by missing orders, they could be because of the lack of raw materials … Unknown worries!

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