As the National Association of Home Builders celebrates National Homeownership Month in June, builders are urging lawmakers to implement policies that will help improve housing affordability, calling for resolution on supply chain disruptions and the end of Canadian timber tariffs.
Prices for building materials are up 19.2% year-on-year and 35.6% since the start of the pandemic, according to the latest Producer Price Index report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Additionally, tariffs on Canadian lumber shipments to the U.S. and production bottlenecks have fueled lumber price volatility, which has added more than $18,600 to the price of a new home since last August.
“The supply chain crisis and lumber prices in the housing industry are putting the American dream of homeownership out of reach for families,” said NAHB President Jerry Konter. “Home builders need access to reasonably priced lumber to build a home the average working family can afford.”
In April, more than 10,000 NAHB members from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico sent a letter to President Biden calling on the White House to take immediate action to address the growing affordability crisis. housing.
The following month, the Biden administration released a “housing supply action plan” to alleviate high housing costs by increasing the supply of quality housing across the country over the next five years. Homebuilders say the plan doesn’t go far enough to address the industry’s many underlying challenges, including rising costs for lumber and other building materials and the broader supply chain crisis. ‘supply.
“Ending tariffs on Canadian lumber shipments will allow builders to build more affordable entry-level housing, provide quality rental housing and strengthen the national economy,” Konter said.
New home sales posted a double-digit percentage decline in April, falling to their weakest pace in two years, as rising mortgage interest rates and deteriorating affordability conditions continue to weigh on the housing market.