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Belco August Lumber Market Snapshot 2022

August Lumber Market Overview

The market is dipping, but this information isn’t new. Interest rates continue to increase. Permits decrease. Plus, whispering about a looming recession continues to circulates. These are just a few of the reasons why single-family home construction is slowing down. Here’s a snapshot of the August lumber market.

July was not a hot month for building or buying. Although, this isn’t unusual for the lumber industry. We often see prices drop a bit despite the growing heat of summer. However this year, we are also seeing that customers are holding off on buying in hopes that prices continue to drop further. 

National Pulse Check

Let’s explore this by region with a national pulse check from the Belco perspective.

Pacific Northwest: In Washington, dealers continue to stay busy despite some of the current national trends. Builders are putting homes on the ground and dealers are building through material. There is hope for strong third and fourth quarters. We are seeing consistent orders in Oregon as well as dealers continue to hit their forecasted goals.

Colorado: In Colorado, single-family starts moved down slightly over the past two month. At the same time, multifamily projects increased over 10% in June per the numbers from the US Census Bureau. It seems that builders are projecting this dip to continue.

Arizona: Arizona starts in the Phoenix Metro area for single-family have decreased from about 3800 starts in March, to only 2200 in June. Like Colorado, multifamily has performed well, moving upward from 1400 units in March, to 1700 in June per the US Census Bureau.

Nevada: Las Vegas single-family starts have gone from 1400 in March, to only 950 in June. Throughout 2022 multifamily starts have moved from 1200 to only 500 in June, per the US Census Bureau.

Texas: While the Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston areas begin to slow, Central Texas remains strong. A look at permits for the three metro areas shows mixed results. In Austin, permits are ahead of May, but down 10.5% from a year ago for single family. In DWF, single family permits are down from a year ago, but multifamily is running  11.6% ahead of last year. In San Antonio, multifamily shot up 146%.

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