NAHB: Builder Shortage Is Getting Worse

August 15, 2017

The inventory of for-sale homes has struck a 20-year low. And while economists and the public cry for more inventory, many builders are pressed to meet demand. A labor and subcontractor shortage in the building industry has worsened over the past year, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index survey of single-family builders.

Builders reported widespread shortages for each of the 15 occupations surveyed. 

Builders also reported a shortage of subcontractors. For example, 85 percent of builders surveyed reported a shortage of framing subcontractors.

The NAHB posits that some workers who were laid off during the housing downturn never returned to the building industry or went to work for larger firms.

“The current labor shortage seems especially severe relative to housing starts, which have only partially recovered from their post-2006 decline,” the NAHB notes on its blog, Eye on Housing.

Source: “Share of Builders Reporting Labor Shortages Rises Again,” National Association of Home Builders’ Eye on Housing blog (Aug. 14, 2017)