: This tiny $3 component is holding up the construction of new homes

by | Sep 10, 2022 | Stock Market

Here’s one reason why some builders are finding it hard to complete new homes — they can’t find a tiny $3 component to finish their windows. Earlier this year, supply-chain shortages were ravaging industries, with products from baby formula to core components like semiconductors being hard to find, frustrating American businesses and consumers.

Housing had its own supply-chain issues, with builders missing things like garage doors and appliances, preventing builders from finishing homes and handing them over to buyers. One of the more unexpected items that was in short supply was a tiny but critical item required by homebuilders when they’re trying to put windows on a home: window casement latches. On a podcast hosted by John Burns Real Estate Consulting, Greg Brooks, who is with the Executive Council on Construction Supply, explained how a shortage of $3 window casement latches is causing an outsized impact on output. “We had a discussion at our last meeting, and among our members is a major window manufacturer. And people are talking about how… windows are kind of the largest, biggest problem in the channel right now,” Brooks said. But oddly enough, that one member noted that they’re not having problems with the windows themselves.  “We’ve got all the materials we need to build windows,” Brooks recalled them saying. “The problem [is that] casement window latches that we were sourcing … was stopped because they could not get latches.”

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