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Building costs and labor limiting Aberdeen housing expansion

Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 7:34 PM CDT
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ABERDEEN, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Aberdeen home builders are struggling to keep up with the demand for housing the city, citing the continued high cost of building materials and labor shortage in the region.

The supply of building materials is short in the Midwest, and affected by the fluctuating price and supply of materials elsewhere in the country.

“Everything is fluctuating. And typically in our region, if our indexes are starting to talk about futures, it takes longer times for it to reach our Midwestern area before we see those effects.” said Aberdeen Home Builders Association Executive Officer Rachel Dix.

Dix said those shortages are prolonging projects. And even when materials are available, there’s a shortage of labor as there aren’t enough skilled workers to keep up.

“But if we had an ample workforce when it came to the skilled trades, we wouldn’t see such a backlog of housing shortages, or time frames of building houses.” said Dix.

One of those organizations affected by costs and labor is Homes Are Possible, Inc. Executive Director Jeff Mitchell said those rising building costs are in turn affecting the price of sale for buyers, going against their own goals as an organizations.

“It’s forced us to do something we don’t like to do, which is make jumps in the cost of our houses. Every time that goes up, that means there’s probably less people who can actually afford to do it.” said Mitchell.

Mitchell said, however, the shortage of materials and workers shouldn’t discourage developers from the area. He said that Aberdeen is a growing community, with much need for new development for the future.

“There are good opportunities for people to do development work, to build in this community. And the community would thank them for that.” said Mitchell.

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