Lumber shortage driving prices up

Local News

ST. MARYS, Kan. (KSNT)– The coronavirus has caused prices to go up for many resources, and lumber is no exception.

Lumber prices have more than doubled since the beginning of the year because of a supply and demand issue. This has kept companies in the industry, like St. Marys Lumber Company busy.

The demand for building and construction is high, but the lumber mills couldn’t keep up after the virus hit. A lot of them had to stop producing the product altogether, making it harder to find lumber. The problem builders are running into now is they have to search harder and act fast to get the materials they need.

“Some of the prices, some of the mills, and the people that produce the product see an opportunity to raise prices,” Andy Perry said, owner of St. Marys Lumber Co. “And they’ll take that. Even though, maybe, their cost of goods hasn’t gone up. But they know everyone else is raising prices and so I’m afraid some of this is never going to come back down.”

The price increase isn’t stopping projects from being built, but people may have to wait longer to complete them. The demand for lumber is strong and it will stay strong through the next couple of months at least. So builders should expect longer timelines and higher prices.

St. Marys Lumber Co. thinks there could be a softening in the market, meaning less of a demand, come late November. This all depends on the weather and if people are able to build.

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