Housebuilder Insight: Material Shortages
There’s no denying it’s been a difficult few years for the housebuilding industry. Homeowners are (rightly) demanding high-quality homes with low running costs, while developers are simultaneously under pressure to deliver incredibly efficient builds more quickly and cheaply.
To help unpack some of these issues, the Pasquill team recently worked alongside Housebuilder & Developer magazine to conduct research that would help us better understand the needs and wants of our housebuilder customers.
Here’s what they told us, in the first blog in a new Pasquill series of housebuilder insights.
Materials shortages: the state of play
Material shortages have been one of the housebuilding industry’s most significant challenges over the past few years. An unlucky combination of supply chain problems and excess demand resulted in soaring costs and unwieldy lead times.
Therefore it’s no surprise that materials shortages came top of the list of housebuilder priorities:
- An overwhelming 95% told us that ‘the availability of products is when ordered’ was either very or fairly important
- 69% said their projects had been delayed ‘frequently’ due to material delays that affected project timescales
- 61% said clear visibility of lead times was ‘very important.’
- Over half said they’d adapted their projects to compensate for limited materials or long lead times.
Our take: let’s try to put certainty back into construction
Thanks to a combination of strategic procurement and access to our parent company Saint-Gobain’s robust supply chains, we are confident in our ability to provide consistent delivery of timber-engineered solutions to our customers.
There are also indications that the industry-wide availability of building materials may be improving too, though unfortunately this comes hand-in-hand with rising inflation and increasing costs.
However, we believe this makes the case for off-site construction and timber components stronger than ever. Accuracy, reduced waste and costs that are agreed upfront can help to ease the burden of rising prices and materials shortages should they return, ultimately increasing certainty for housebuilders.
Ross Baxter, Managing Director of Pasquill and the Saint-Gobain Off-Site Solutions division, explains his thoughts:
“We work incredibly closely with both large and small housebuilders, and believe it’s our responsibility to help them achieve their goals of building higher quality and more sustainable homes. We need to put certainty back into construction to help make the sector more robust, futureproofing delivery of new homes in the process.
“While we’re pleased to see the availability of materials increase, there are new challenges ahead such as the rising cost of materials. Therefore it’s time for a fresh approach for the sector that builds confidence into the process right from the beginning. Using off-site and timber engineering components, such as Pasquill provides, helps to achieve this by better allowing housebuilders to standardise and forecast for their projects.”
To explore examples of how we’ve helped other housebuilders across the UK, take a look at some of our case studies here.