With just about every recent report related to home construction finally rebounding comes another report related to the shortage of skilled labor.
Builders are being hampered by a lack of tradesmen in markets like Chicago, Denver and California. The shortage is hitting both builders and buyers with higher costs and more construction delays. Builders have to turn away business as the shortage mounts. The shortage also directly impacts the cost of the home buyers end up paying.
A recent report conducted by the project management and construction-consulting firm Rider Levett Bucknell showed costs are rising in places like Denver among others. The firm stated, “prices may continue to jump if subcontractor resources diminish, profit expectations increase or competition is reduced.”
Construction costs in the 12 markets where research was conducted for the first quarter of 2014 increased by an average of 1.15 percent, the largest national increase since July 2008.
The industry lost 2.3 million jobs from 2007 to 2009 and only recouped less than half a million jobs since.
In January, the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) survey reported 86 percent of companies planned on hiring more skilled laborers this year with 62 percent already frustrated they could not fill key trades needs.
One Solution to the Skilled Labor Shortage: Modular Construction
As the shortage continues, and increases in some states, modular construction offers relief to both builders and buyers.
Many builders still struggle with the idea of modular construction despite its advantages and the opportunity to overcome the skilled labor shortage because of a lack of education available. Building modular in a factory significantly reduces the amount of skilled labor a builder requires on site to help projects continue to move forward. Modular and prefab construction simplifies the on-site construction process and reduces time on the overall all building process.
Building modular, means building in a factory with the manufacturer taking on the work of as many as 30 tradesmen. Not only does modular construction help reduce overall construction time; it also reduces a builders costs.
Modular construction also saves buyers money while prices rise everywhere else in the construction industry.
With the shortage of skilled labor, and the limited understanding of the advantages of modular construction among builders, builders who are turning to modular and prefab construction have the opportunity to get ahead of their competition and complete their projects on time and within budget for their customers.