Lumber Prices Rise

NORTHWOOD, IA - Its official, the housing market is now making a comeback and that’s despite an increase in lumber prices, and other commodities that make building a home more expensive.

It’s a commodity that home builders can’t go without; unfortunately it’s costing more and impacting home prices.

“When we talk building products you know we’re talking more than just wood. We’re talking shingles, siding, sheet rock, doors, windows and everything keeps going up each year, so that number per square foot to put up a house is definitely increasing,” said Randy Severson of Northwood Lumber in Northwood.

Home builders across the country are reporting increases in housing prices of up to $50,000 due to the higher lumber prices, but they say lumber can only take part of the blame.

“Costs to get freight; get the product to the lumber yards. Then of course natural disasters. If there seems to be any natural disasters in the United States, that will affect prices of all commodities basically that will be used in that area,” said Severson.

As the price of commodities continues to increase, some would expect the home market to suffer.

Although, one north Iowa Realtor says it’s going to take a lot more than that to keep home owners away.

Dan Low is the Owner and Broker of Worth Realty and says he understands the increase in lumber prices but that hasn’t stopped buyers from making the commitment.

“I believe that our interest rates are so good now that people are stepping back and saying, ‘hey look, you know I’m spending “x” number of dollars each month for rent. If there is a way that I can buy a house. I might as well just bite the bullet,’” said Low.

It’s these low monthly rates that lumber dealers are counting on to help keep home buyers interested.

“Basically the final curtain that we see, “what is that person’s payment going to be?” As long as they can afford the payment, they really don’t look at the so-called underlying costs,” said Severson.

Dan also notes that many government-funded projects are in place to help first time homeowners buy a house, and many local cities are encouraging folks to make the move to their town.

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