Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Skyrocketing lumber prices in the USA (180%+ increase in one year) and the reasons why.

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #16
    Originally posted by Dick Steinkamp View Post
    ...then there is the 24% duty imposed on Canadian Lumber by the previous administration. You can look at it as protecting a US industry, but then you can't complain about the price.
    We’re probably up to “Softwood 5 or 6” as the memorandum of understanding is called between Canada and USA. Both my brother and our retired dad spent their entire careers in lumber wholesale and if you look up “counterveiling duties” or “stumpage fees” you’ll see it extends far back beyond the last administration.

    Canada’s forest may seem limitless, but only a modest fraction is good for dimensioned lumber; much is used for pulpwood. However with the US having 10x the population of my “home and native land”, the appetite for lumber here makes Canada very happy.

    Comment


    • #17
      Brent,
      Same here in Canada where it was just announced we have had a 4 x increase in the last 18 months. It explains why the average single family home in our British Columbia Okanagan Valley, is now $819,000 CDN.

      Comment


      • #18
        Originally posted by Buzzard View Post
        Brent,
        Same here in Canada where it was just announced we have had a 4 x increase in the last 18 months. It explains why the average single family home in our British Columbia Okanagan Valley, is now $819,000 CDN.
        The article mentioned the possibility of importing lumber from Europe being that they also have a beetle infestation that is killing trees, therefor they are milling these trees as quickly as they can. I haven't heard any mention of China yet, I assume they have lots of lumber that they would gladly export to our shores (which would likely contain invasive species and/or toxic chemicals).

        As for an average home costing $819,000 Canadian dollars, maybe it is time for people to build smaller houses? Just because we can borrow money to build a massive house doesn't mean that it is a good or practical idea.
        sigpic
        In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

        Comment


        • #19
          Originally posted by Milaca View Post

          The article mentioned the possibility of importing lumber from Europe being that they also have a beetle infestation that is killing trees, therefor they are milling these trees as quickly as they can. I haven't heard any mention of China yet, I assume they have lots of lumber that they would gladly export to our shores (which would likely contain invasive species and/or toxic chemicals).

          As for an average home costing $819,000 Canadian dollars, maybe it is time for people to build smaller houses? Just because we can borrow money to build a massive house doesn't mean that it is a good or practical idea.
          Assumption is not quite right - China has very very little structural timber assets. Russia on the other hand has incredibly massive tree stands, with the right spruce-pine-fir species to make a stick of lumber from.

          What we use here now in Canada and US to treat lumber is very toxic but less toxic that the PCP we used to use. I sold TCMTB, Copper-8 and Ecobrite to the BC and Alberta sawmills when I graduated from college. All had their human and enviro drawbacks, but the lumber had to survive the humid holds of a ship or a boxcar traveling to Asia or to the US and remain free of “stain”.

          Wood = food for fungi as well as bugs.

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by NCDave51 View Post

            Assumption is not quite right - China has very very little structural timber assets. Russia on the other hand has incredibly massive tree stands, with the right spruce-pine-fir species to make a stick of lumber from.

            What we use here now in Canada and US to treat lumber is very toxic but less toxic that the PCP we used to use. I sold TCMTB, Copper-8 and Ecobrite to the BC and Alberta sawmills when I graduated from college. All had their human and enviro drawbacks, but the lumber had to survive the humid holds of a ship or a boxcar traveling to Asia or to the US and remain free of “stain”.

            Wood = food for fungi as well as bugs.
            Thank you for the correction, it reminded me that I had read years ago about China being a large importer of timber from the Amazon rainforest. I only hope that the U.S. doesn't import timber from the Amazon, but I wouldn't be too surprised if they do.
            sigpic
            In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

            Comment


            • #21
              Thank you for the correction, it reminded me that I had read years ago about China being a large importer of timber from the Amazon rainforest. I only hope that the U.S. doesn't import timber from the Amazon, but I wouldn't be too surprised if they do.
              I don't know about dimensional lumber but I believe all the mahogany used for doors and trim comes from central and south America. Even 30 yrs ago there I remember reading about concerns about logging out the Amazon and a lot of that at that time was mahogany.


              Jeff in ND

              Comment


              • #22
                Originally posted by Milaca View Post
                As for an average home costing $819,000 Canadian dollars, maybe it is time for people to build smaller houses? Just because we can borrow money to build a massive house doesn't mean that it is a good or practical idea.
                In some areas, that figure is the LOT VALUE, not including the structure on it, if there is one, inhabitable or not. Especially the Lower Mainland of BC.

                Craig


                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Dick Steinkamp View Post
                  ...then there is the 24% duty imposed on Canadian Lumber by the previous administration. You can look at it as protecting a US industry, but then you can't complain about the price.
                  The mindless tit for tat has been a major contributor to the price increase. In addition is the unprecedented number and destructiveness of our natural disasters. From hurricanes to wild fires. Take wildfires for instance, which have yearly burned millions a ares of timber, at the same time burning homes that need to be rebuilt.

                  It's naive to believe that a sawmill can be started or stopped at the drop of a hat. There is simply no sustainable wood supply, but there are many other considerations as well, like today's laborer who is unwilling to work in the dangerous and backbreaking logging and milling operations. I worked my way through college pulling lumber off a green chain. During the 60's there were nine operating mills in and around Seattle, today there are none. I personally witnessed two of the mills in which I worked, go under during that decade. Even sixty years ago it was difficult to get workers willing to do what we did. It worked for me, because I was willing to do a job that others couldn't or wouldn't do. It gave me immediate employment whenever I wanted it. All I had to do was show up with my leather apron rolled up under me arm. Resume, applications?-a joke, the closest I got was a question on what I did? The answer was even simpler-I pull. I was hired on the spot, but the tallyman didn't mess around he immediately broke me in on the long side of the chain. I worked at that mill for a full year. That mill was gone by 1973.

                  I'm irritated today because our lack of willingness to salvage dimensional lumber. When a building is razed most contractors just knock it down and haul it to a landfill. Dismantling and salvaging techniques have been developed that make it just as cost effective as knocking it down. This is an area that we really have to change our attitude about recycling.

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Hallabutt View Post

                    I'm irritated today because our lack of willingness to salvage dimensional lumber. When a building is razed most contractors just knock it down and haul it to a landfill. Dismantling and salvaging techniques have been developed that make it just as cost effective as knocking it down. This is an area that we really have to change our attitude about recycling.
                    Completely agree! We do it with used pallets - we can do it with homes and other lumber structures. Great comment.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Bob, the cost of the building is just part of the puzzle. If it is for a legitimate business use you need to figure in the loss of business if you don't build it. I have built quite a few buildings for myself for business purposes. They always seemed to end up costing more than planned but it always worked out in the end.

                      I often put on my nail apron and did parts of the job myself. There is a lot of cost at the end of the job and never much time.
                      Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Dismantling and salvaging techniques have been developed that make it just as cost effective as knocking it down. This is an area that we really have to change our attitude about recycling.
                        I would be genuinely curious to read about that.

                        Seems like there is too much labor involved in salvaging vs the value of the recovered material. Doing remodeling projects, I've reused some materials and extracting all the bent nails and other fasteners takes time. Trimming off damaged sections, etc. I am sure if I had a contractor doing the work they would not even think of reusing anything.

                        My house was built in 1918 and working on parts of it, I have found the original builders used salvaged material here and there. I think in those days the cost of materials relative to labor must have been inverted compared to more recent times. Maybe with material costs going up per this thread, that mindset changes?

                        In a lot of cases on a whole building demo, all the effort to separate "hazardous" materials like asphalt shingles, siding with possible lead paint, asbestos containing stuff, etc. I can see why it is quicker and less labor to just crunch it all up with a backhoe and bulldozer and haul it away.

                        I think about the dairy barn on the family farm. Its slowly rotting and will eventually have to get taken down or let to fall on its own and then hauled away. If it had been dismantled 20yrs ago, even then all you would possibly salvage would be the roof rafters and perhaps some studs from the hay mow upper walls. Anything in the lower area where the animals had been contaminated with manure, ammonia, or whitewash that was sprayed onto everything.

                        Right now its going to be $$$$ to have that site cleared as the hazardous waste rules in that locale leave few options other than it all gets trucked to the landfill.

                        Jeff in ND

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Bill,
                          Quote: "I'm irritated today because our lack of willingness to salvage dimensional lumber. When a building is razed most contractors just knock it down and haul it to a landfill. Dismantling and salvaging techniques have been developed that make it just as cost effective as knocking it down. This is an area that we really have to change our attitude about recycling."

                          We were fortunate when we built our retirement home in the British Columbia wilderness 10 or 11 years ago, that the costs were what they were. If it was today we certainly couldn't afford it.
                          One of our customers' vocations was reclamation of old Douglas Fir construction materials and we lucked into his timely dismantling of a an old fish cannery on Vancouver Island. The old circular saw marks still show proving that the wood was originally harvested in the late 1800's. (At this point a mature Douglas Fir being harvested would have been about 700 or so years old). This makes our flooring currently about 850 years old. Of course it isn't dimensionally perfect as with today's engineered floors, but who else has the narrowest board in their living room at 17" width with most 19" or 20 " wide and 34 feet long?
                          We feel to have been blessed with both our ability to find this unique lumber as well as perfect timing for our procurement.

                          It pains us when we see the dismantling of old semi-historic buildings being done with an excavator instead of manpower. We (mankind in general) seem to be all too quick to cast off our history.
                          Click image for larger version

Name:	DSC_2187[1].JPG
Views:	170
Size:	66.0 KB
ID:	1886185 Bill

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Thank you gentlemen for the comments. As Bill indicates another reason for salvage is it's quality. When I first started working in a mill during the early 60's we ran nothing but old growth Doug Fir and it was planned to 2" by whatever. We ran it green, there was no kiln drying necessary. By the late 60's dimensional lumber was milled to 2" and then planned. There was less and less Doug Fir, and because of the moisture content of Western Hemlock everything had to be kin dried. What I saw and what I know has given me a deep appreciation for a surviving piece of ancient, old growth Douglas Fir. It's a personal appreciation bordering on reverence for the character or each piece. Then there is Red and Alaska yellow cedar, and West Coast Redwood, another chapter could be dedicated to their unique qualities. No folks lumber is not all the same.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              We have a REstore here in Bellingham. They are a non profit and do a booming business taking apart and salvaging buildings that are being replaced, selling used lumber, windows, doors, plumbing fixtures, etc, and repurposing building materials.

                              "We defy wastefulness. We empower displaced workers. We take down buildings. We pick up used items. We build furniture. We teach ways to reuse. We grow to meet the changing needs of our community."

                              My house was built in 1929. Fir floors thoughout. Not as practical as oak but I think far more beautiful.

                              Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_5950.jpeg
Views:	160
Size:	52.7 KB
ID:	1886207
                              Dick Steinkamp
                              Bellingham, WA

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Lumber prices have done the same thing on this side of the border. Plywood and dimensional lumber or 3 to 4 times more money today than they were in January 2020.
                                Mark Hayden
                                '66 Commander
                                Zone Coordinator
                                Pacific Can-Am Zone

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X