El Paso homebuilders face delays as pandemic causes supply shortage for new homes

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El Paso homebuilders report high demand for new homes, but the pandemic is causing some delays for many of them

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Some El Paso homebuilders are seeing delays in getting products at a time when there is a high demand for new homes.

The delays have been caused by the virus, natural disasters and high demand.

“I’ve been doing this an awfully long time, and I’ve seen a lot of different things that affect homebuilding, but I’ve never seen anything like what we’re going through right now,” said Mark Dyer, senior vice president for Winton and Associates.

Dyer told KTSM 9 News that the company has been seeing delays at every stage of building.

“Problems with lumber, problems with appliances, problems with lighting, problems with scheduling, permitting, concrete — you name it,” said Dyer.

Dyer added that workers testing positive for the virus has also caused delays.

“If we have, like, a plumber that comes down with COVID-19 or tests positive, then his entire crew is tested, and if there are any positive tests, then they’ve got a 14-day quarantine,” said Dyer.

Dyer said that Winton and Associates have been able to adapt to the changing situation. However, they still can’t build homes fast enough.

“We’ve had a variety of problems, none that we haven’t been able to overcome with scheduling and talking to our customers who are buying homes from us,” said Dyer.

Winton and Associates said they currently have 97 homes under construction in El Paso, with 84 of them already sold.

The El Paso Association of Builders told KTSM 9 News that low-interest rates between 2 percent and 4 percent and more people buying homes are making it difficult for builders to keep up.

“Demand No. 1, extremely low-interest rates No. 2 and delays in being able to get what you want, more than likely. There’s a lot shortage within the community and there is also a very high demand for all the new homes. Since COVID has taken us into our homes we’re realizing that perhaps we want a newer place to live,” said Ray Adauto, executive vice president of the El Paso Association of Builders.

Adauto also added that this problem isn’t only happening in El Paso.

“There are things that are out of local control, including shortages in lumber availability, cost, transportation for those items — those are things that are things that we can’t control locally; including suppliers, local suppliers are having difficulty stocking up on lumber products,” said Adauto.

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