November Market Update

Nov 29, 2013

It's the holiday season, a time that reminds us to reflect gratefully on the past year and look forward to what's in store for 2014. We'd like to express our sincerest gratitude to our customers as we reflect on 2013. Rebounding from the recession has been a slow process only made possible by the perseverance of builders and their confidence in the industry. All of us at WBS thank you for your business and loyalty throughout this time. As we look forward, projections verify there are good times to come. Read below for current building industry conditions and forecasts for upcoming months.

Cost of Framing Materials

Framing material costs in the month of November are keeping confidence levels up as we head further into the winter months. Prices experienced a slight lift, up 2.11% from last month, and were 2.23% higher than November 2012. Costs of framing materials are closely matching what was projected-slow, continuous growth through the remainder of 2013. Experiencing growth during the winter months, a time normally vulnerable to seasonal lull, is encouraging to both builders and suppliers.

Overseas Exports Surge in 2013

In the third quarter, U.S. exports of softwood lumber hit their highest quarterly total since 1997 with volumes up 22% from 2012 according to Random Lengths. Canadian offshore exports increased dramatically to 1.48 billion board feet in the third quarter, up 28% from one year ago. A major portion of the surge in U.S. exports can be attributed to China showing a 68% increase. Other Asian destinations were active, including a 19% increase to the Philippines, but traders are unsure exactly how much the recent typhoon will influence the demand in the country. Meanwhile, U.S. imports from offshore suppliers continued to rise, but at a slower pace when compared the first half of the year. Overall imports from offshore gained 47% compared to last year.

Design Trend: Big Garage, Small Presence.

Americans' demand for more space and storage is creating a challenge for residential home designers. Many homebuyers want or require a three-car garage, but not at the expense of their curb appeal. Builders have accepted the challenge and are creating custom designs that allow plenty of room for storage, but showcase the true qualities of a home. In some floor plans you can't even spot the garage from the front of the home at all. Read more and see example illustrations of these innovative design solutions on