Materials and skills shortages threatens construction’s recovery

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The construction industry is struggling to recover due to increasing material costs and skills shortages, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB)

The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has responded to the latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) saying that the overall picture remains bleak for the construction industry.

The increase in construction output at 1.3% in September is welcome news but the industry is continuing to face difficulties due to soaring prices with materials and skills shortages.

Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB said: “The 1.3% improvement in construction output in September is a positive turnaround from the fall in previous months.

‘Builders forced to press pause on jobs’

“The 1.5% drop in overall output for Q3 2021, from Q2, signals the continued need for action to be taken to resolve building material and skills shortages.

“Through the FMB’s State of Trade Survey for Q3, we know that 89% of small, local builders have been forced to press pause on jobs as a result of material and labour shortages, with 97% having experienced increased material costs.

“The fact that we are now experiencing the strongest annual rate of construction output price growth since records began indicates the unhealthy effects of these two issues on the sector.”

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