December 11, 2020
New data from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Commercial Construction Index for Q4 2020 has found that 41% of contractors say that less availability of building products and materials is a severe consequence of the ongoing COVID pandemic, up from just 15% saying the same in Q3.
Of those surveyed in the index, 71% said they face at least one material shortage, up 17 points from 54% in Q3. The most reported material shortage is wood/lumber, which has seen higher demand from a boom in residential construction during the pandemic. Of those contractors experiencing shortages, 89% say it is having a moderate to high level of impact on their business, up from 75% saying so last quarter.
“The pandemic has exacerbated issues contractors were already facing in availability and cost of materials from tariffs and a shortage of skilled workers,” said Neil Bradley, executive vice president and chief policy officer at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “But there’s reason for optimism. More than one in three contractors plan to hire more workers in the next six months, and most see sufficient new business in the coming year.”
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