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Please remember, item availability is not guaranteed. All sales are final. Upon request, purchased items can be transferred to the WBS location nearest you. For additional information on any of the items listed, please contact the WBS location carrying the item/s.

Friday, November 11, 2011

November News: Multifamily Growth, Confidence Boost, Faulty Appraisals

Welcome Lyman Lumber
Wisconsin Building Supply is pleased to welcome a new member to the family. On October 28, 2011, Lyman Lumber joined the USLBM family of companies and adds to the continued growth of our organization. Lyman Lumber has been in business for 114 years and has facilities in Eau Claire, as well as the Twin Cities in Minnesota.

Market Updates
We’re always keeping our eyes on the markets, and our numbers show the cost of lumber materials for a typical two-story house is down 0.41% from this time last year. According to Random Lengths, U.S. lumber production as of August is up 8.5% from the same period of 2010 – that’s a total of 18.008 billion board feet for the first two-thirds of this year. Nationwide, August production totaled 2.301 billion board feet, up 7.3% from August 2010 and 3.1% higher than the July 2011 total. Prices for 7/16” OSB are holding steady at levels slightly higher than one year ago, and sales are in step with production for the most part.

Multifamily Growth Continues
Multifamily builds are continuing to push U.S. housing starts. The Census Bureau reports that in September, the multifamily rate surged 51.3% to its highest level since October 2008, while the rate of single-family starts rose by 1.7%. Analysts say these gains are due to the rising demand for apartments and condominiums as more Americans look at renting.

Boost in Builder Confidence
The National Association of Home Builders says builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes has had the largest one-month gain its index has seen since the home buyer tax credit program helped spur the market in April of 2010.

“This latest boost in builder confidence is a good sign that some pockets of recovery are starting to emerge across the country as extremely favorable interest rates and prices catch consumers’ attention,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.

Crowe also points out that builders still aren’t giving market conditions a good rating: “One reason is that builders are facing downward pricing pressures from foreclosed homes at the same time that building materials costs are rising, and this is further squeezing already tight margins.”

Fighting Faulty Appraisals
Another recent focus is faulty appraisal practices that hurt builders who are already facing declining home prices, rising foreclosures and plunging new-home sales. The NAHB says builders’ houses are too often appraised at less than the cost of construction.

“This is not only unfair and unreasonable, but it perpetuates the cycle of declining home values, drives more home owners underwater, negatively affects housing demand and acts as an obstacle to the recovery of the housing market,” NAHB Chairman Bob Nielsen said.

Last month, the NAHB held its fourth appraisal summit with representatives of federal banking regulators, the appraisal industry, the housing finance industry, real estate and residential construction. To learn more, visit the NAHB Appraisal Issues Page.

Featured Product:
We’re continuing our monthly series of featured products with Andersen 100 Series Windows. Whether you’re replacing, remodeling or building, you can bring Andersen beauty, craftsmanship and time-tested performance into a home for less than you may expect. Andersen 100 Series windows are made with Fibrex® composite material, which allows Andersen to offer an uncommon value that’s environmentally responsible and energy efficient. Watch our Facebook and Twitter posts to learn more, or contact your local Wisconsin Building Supply to get a closer look.

Spreading the Word
We’d be glad to shine our social media spotlight on your projects and activities with photos and updates. We’re also adding more Facebook Events, such as the House of the Future Preview Party in Mount Horeb on November 16. Keep us in the loop, and we’ll spread the word!