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UK Construction Sector Hit By Supply Shortages

The Bank of England said Working From Home helped drive up house prices in the UK by making consumers willing to pay more for places.

Four out of five construction firms surveyed by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors say shortages of building materials are restricting activity and two-thirds find it difficult to hire bricklayers and carpenters. Among so-called 'white-collar' professionals, quantity researchers are also increasingly unable to find decency, according to the survey.

The findings suggest that the pace of recovery in the construction sector, as well as negative headwinds, are affecting the overall economy. Loosening epidemic rules has unleashed pent-up demand as companies struggle to rehire workers they have taken leave to.

Builders expect the cost of materials to rise by more than 10% next year. According to a separate survey , expectations of wage increases are highest in the construction industry along with Transport and hospitality.

May April and May , despite increasing pressures and slowing growth , construction output is expected to grow by 13.7% this year and 6.3% in 2022, according to the Building Products Association . April February and April last year saw a rise in UK home building, helping Decommissioning activity to pre-pandemic levels in the first months of 2021, after total production fell by 44%.

"The weather is pretty optimistic, with new business queries gathering smartly," said Simon Rubinsohn, chief economist at RICS. He added: "some concerns are being raised about rising construction costs."


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