Steel, timber, insulation: where to next for material price increases?

There is not a single cause for the sudden increase in the price of materials. The pandemic, Brexit, ROI tree licencing, high demand compounded by shortages of raw materials worldwide, have all contributed to the problem. The madness will subside on most fronts, but it’s likely that costs will continue to rise for certain products.

To put the current material price increases in context, it’s important to remember that materials account for, on average, 40 per cent of the cost of any domestic house build. Each material itself will amount to a fraction of a percentage of that overall material amount.  

     A percentage increase in a single material will therefore only raise the cost of a project by a fraction of that percentage. By way of example, on most projects if steel increases by 50 per cent in cost, the actual impact on the overall project cost might only be 2.5 per cent.

Written by Astrid Madsen

Astrid Madsen is the editor of the SelfBuild magazine. She previously held the same role in an Irish trade publication, before that she worked at the National Standards Authority of Ireland. She graduated with a BA in Urban Studies from Columbia University in New York and holds an MBA from the Instituto de Estudios Bursatiles in Madrid. France of origin, she now lives in Portarlington, County Laois, where she's taken on the task of renovating a listed building! Email

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