What a year! Covid impacted the residential construction market in ways that took many of us by big surprise. After a month of paralysis in March 2020 when the magnitude of the pandemic settled in, builders quickly figured out safe ways to keep working, and home-owners starting acting on their need to add space to their homes. Demand has spiked for additions, remodels, and even for people building new homes in outer areas now that they foresee working remotely over the long-term. This increased demand along with historically low interest rates has fueled a boom in residential construction that doesn’t show any sign of abating any time soon. At the same time however, temporary shut-downs of factories and lumber mills in the early days of the pandemic caused a shortage of building materials. This, followed by increased demand on these same materials, has caused a huge rise in costs….most notable is the extreme increase in lumber costs. Availability of materials has also slowed down: factories have slowed production, and component parts are back-ordered, creating frustrating delays in construction schedules.