May 27, 2021
Chris is joined again by Stinson Dean (Founder of Deacon Lumber) as well as Ali Wolf (Chief Economist at Zonda) and Dustin Jalbert (Fastmarkets RISI's Lumber Lead) for another deep dive into the lumber industry with an emphasis on the home building and sawmill side.
On this episode, they discuss how the lumber price increase has affected the housing market, labor markets in wood products and residential employment, risks for home building & sawmills, the impact on multi-family, and a ton more. Enjoy!
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(02:55) - Introductions
(05:32) - Ali: How has the lumber increase affected the housing market?
(08:07) - Regional Trends on Housing Prices
(10:05) - Dustin: The State of The Union of Canadian Sawmills and Their Perspective on This Insane Price Jump
(12:20) - The Labor Markets in Wood Products and Residential Employment
(18:59) - Are home builders going to be building spec homes as quickly as before?
(20:29) - Data on Demand for Single-Family Homes Driven by Population Migration Over the Past Year
(21:32) - Who’s making all the money with labor shortages in sawmills and do they have incentives to go back to full capacity?
(24:12) - What’s the barrier to entry for more people starting sawmills?
(27:39) - The Logging Situation in the Pacific Northwest
(31:37) - Potential Uses for Southern Yellow Pine
(35:28) - How many homes can you project that a new sawmill would be able to supply from the get-go?
(41:35) - Builders Dealing with Lumber Thieves
(43:05) - Why do the Canadians control everything and why hasn’t private equity jumped into this? Do the Canadians have trade secrets that give them the monopoly?
(47:11) - How is risk going to reorient itself in housing?
(49:38) - How does the size of the home building companies affect the relationships with lumber vendors going forward?
(50:54) - What are the mills saying about risk management and price forecasting?
(57:54) - What do builders do with their pricing if lumber prices do come down?
(59:12) - Major Publics vs. Regional Builders and Their Ability to Compete with Each Other Going Forward
(1:07:06) - Are homes getting smaller?
(1:11:13) - How has lumber impacted multi-family?
(1:17:01) - How do we get more efficient in home building?
(1:23:35) - Why does build time keep taking longer and longer?
(1:27:34) - Are there opportunities to buy up these older sawmills and implement technology to get them going again?
(1:31:07) - How much of our lumber comes from North America and how much of the globe is using North American Lumber?
(1:41:16) - What is your prediction for 1,000 board feet of lumber in 12 months? (Recorded on 5.24.2021)
(1:43:18) - Is there a range lumber gets to where it's actually bad for the industry?
(1:46:37) - Closing Thoughts
The FORT with Chris Powers is produced by Straight Up Podcasts