Hurricanes lead to increase in hardwood prices - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Hurricanes lead to increase in hardwood prices

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HERRIN -- While the worst effects of Hurricane Harvey are being felt in Texas, and Florida is bracing for Hurricane Irma, the storms are making an impact in southern Illinois.

According to Kent Smith, owner of Southside Lumber in Herrin, the natural disasters are causing demand and prices for hardware to rise.

"Plywood is obviously the largest increase, then OSB, and then some of your standard lumber and roofing," he said.

Smith says that rapidly increased demand in Florida and Texas for items like plywood, which many people use to board up their homes before a storm, have led to a slight shortage nationally, and a spike in prices.

"They all board up so then we have a lot of lumber shipping down to the coastlines, so a lot of places get transferred to get get shipments there early and fast."

Smith says costs for plywood are up about 20 percent over the last few weeks, and that prices on many hardware products, like sheet rock and roofing materials, are up about 15 percent.

And with Irma heading for Florida, he says costs will likely continue to rise by about 10 percent over the next three weeks, and stay up for a while.

"They can't rebuild overnight, so typically it balances out because of the winter coming on, usually prices stay up for about two months," he said.

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