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New build prices set to rise thanks to severe material shortages

Shock price rises in materials are set to make new build homes more expensive if a warning from leading industry figures is to be believed.

The chief executives of the Builders Merchants Federation and the Construction Products Association, John Newcomb and Peter Caplehorn, say the availability of materials has sharply worsened following the relaxation of Covid restrictions on building work. 

This mirrors similar projections worldwide, as major economies such as China, the US and the EU surge following lockdowns.


The industry chiefs say previously reported issues relating to timber, steel, pitched roofing, plastics and paints and coatings continue, while growing areas of concern now include certain electronic components and bagged cement.

The warning says that the Office for National Statistics projects a rise of seven to eight per cent in material prices, with increases for certain materials, such as timber, expected to more than double during the course of the year.

“New rules on hauliers have exacerbated the shortage of drivers in the UK, which is another contributing factor adding to delays and lead times not only in the construction industry but many other sectors as well” they caution.

They continue: "The surge in demand means some SME builders are not able to purchase essential materials, like timber, cement and roof tiles, as readily off the shelves. This not only impacts their ability to complete projects, but also the cash flow of their business.”

And they conclude: “The unprecedented levels of demand, both in the UK and globally, is set to continue for the foreseeable future, placing the importance of forward planning and communication front and centre. Only by working positively together can we endeavour to provide customers with the products and solutions they require to complete projects in a timely manner.”


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