Capital Region feeling impact of nationwide surge in lumber prices

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CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) – With more people home and looking to make improvements around the house, the price of lumber, and other building supplies, has surged.

“So there’s really unprecedented demand and on the same side, there’s supply site constraints,” said Jim Carpenter, Director of Marketing for Curtis Lumber.

On top of supply and demand, those in the industry have also noted the impact of the winter storm in Texas on chemical plants, poor weather this winter and COVID shutdowns of mills nationwide.

Carpenter is urging patience, and says customers may not be able to get the materials they were originally planning for.

“People have been upgrading from treated lumber, to composite decking, if they’re looking to build a deck, sometimes the exterior cladding on a house, the vinyl siding, or something along those lines, might not be able in the color that they want,” he said.

The significant increase in lumber prices is also leading to more expensive home builds.

“It’s made it very challenging to try to come up with a fair price for homes that you’re going to be building sometime in the future. It’s made it very challenging, and no question, it’s made affordability a little tougher,” says Peter Belmonte, owner of Belmonte Builders.

Belmonte says one of his most popular housing models in Clifton Park has increased in price around 15% since last April.

Meanwhile, smaller lumber yards like Valente Lumber in Rensselaer County, have seen more business, but haven’t been hit by the higher cost of lumber.

“They come to us because we’re a little more versatile. Our supply of lumber is solely based on our saw mill, so I don’t have to buy 2x4s or 2x6s for people to build with,” said Steve Valente, CEO of Valente Lumber.

Valente says the lower costs in this unprecedented time have helped bring in customers.

“Without a doubt, our materials are typically 20-30% cheaper, and you get more material for your buck anyway,” he says.

Those in the industry aren’t sure how long these higher prices will stick around.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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