It Will Take How Long?

If you are a commercial building owner or property manager facing a roofing situation, these are words you know well.  When you have a roofing problem, you don’t really want to hear 6-8 weeks or longer.  So, why is that what you hear from every contractor you call these days?  It is very simple, it is called material shortage or, for those who prefer fancier terms, a disruption in the supply chain.

This shortage is a matter of materials not being available to your contractor.  That contractor really does want your business, but they are unable to obtain the materials, whether shingles, fasteners, adhesives or what have you, to do the job quicker.

What is Causing the Shortages?

If the shortage was as simple as a single material, like shingles for example, that would be an easier answer.  Unfortunately, the roofing industry is facing shortages on almost all of the materials utilized regularly.

Without getting into any political quagmire, the root cause of the shortages is the Covid-19 pandemic.  The worldwide shut-down resulted in reduced availability of raw materials.  This reduced the ability of the manufacturer (many of whom were also on shut-down) to manufacture the supplies your roofer needs to repair your roof today.

Without the necessary supplies and materials, your contractor is simply unable to make those repairs as quickly as you and they would like.

A side-effect of the pandemic has also been a huge increase in roofing demands due to so much new construction taking place.  This increased demand has also increased demand for materials.  No doubt you can see the problem.  Increased demand with decreased supply results in significantly higher prices and longer wait times.

Another unexpected side-effect has been a shortage of labor.  From the laborer that obtains the raw materials through the truck driver that delivers the finished goods, there is a widespread inability to hire or retain employees.  This issue is contributing to the shortage crisis and the inordinately long wait time to have your roofing project completed.

If you aren’t sure this is accurate, go down to your local home improvement center and price some lumber.  If you can find what you’re looking for, you will see that prices have increased substantially.  This is due to that pesky supply/demand issue.

What Can You Do?

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Prioritize.  If you have an emergency repair situation, like a failing system or leaks throughout the building, ask your preferred contractor about securing the situation with a temporary repair until the materials can be obtained for a more permanent solution.

Plan.  If your project is non-urgent, plan ahead and get that contractor scheduled as soon as possible.  Waiting is not going to improve the supply-chain issue. You might as well get your place in line. Experts are predicting a year or longer for recovery, assuming no additional shut-downs go into place.  Getting the project scheduled so your contractor can order the necessary materials and enduring the wait time is definitely in your interest.

Patience.  As Americans, we are used to getting what we want or need right away.  Regardless of how many different contractors you call, you are going to face the waiting game.  This is an industry-wide problem.  In fact, it goes beyond the roofing industry and encompasses nearly all the construction trades.  In fact, depending on the type of business you run, you may be facing supply-line issues of your own.

If you’re still looking for that commercial roofing contractor, call the Choice Roof Contractor Group at (800) 670-5583.  We would be happy to help put you in touch with a qualified contractor in your area.

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Written by: Diana Warwick
Diana Warwick
Diana Warwick grew up in a construction family. Over the decades, she has watched the industry change and evolve. Now, a recently retired RN, Diana is living her dream as a professional researcher and online author. Her strong research background, coupled with years of construction knowledge and innate curiosity, has led to her development as an integral part of a full-service marketing company that specializes in commercial roofing.