It seems everyone wants a deck these days but building them is becoming a real challenge for Couto Construction and other home improvement contractors.

Pressure-treated lumber is at a premium, selling out almost immediately. Couto Construction is doing its best to service customers, but the shortage of decking materials is finally affecting production. It’s unclear when the shortage will end.

“If we get any pressure-treated lumber in, it’s gone within 24 hours,” Fairhaven Lumber’s John Kalife told The Standard-Times.

When Boston construction shut down in March due to COVID-19, those who supply construction slowed production so as to not get stuck with materials they couldn’t sell. 

Nobody anticipated homeowners, bored because they were stuck in place during the pandemic, would overwhelm local contractors with home improvement requests. Decks were among the top sellers.

“We saw a big spike in people calling Couto Construction for decks,” said Couto Construction co-owner Derek Couto. “We do our share of decks, but these past few months have been different.”

“Construction is seasonal, but we’re not seeing that this year,” said Jason Couto, Derek’s brother and co-owner. “Vacations are canceled, so people have a little money to spend. Home improvements is where they seem to have chosen to spend it. And decks and porches are at the top of the list.”

When the shortage does end, the fear is that the cost for pressure-treated wood will skyrocket. Bob Avery of Dartmouth Building Supply told The Standard-Times costs could rise between 20 and 50 percent.

If you have any questions about treated lumber or decking, contact Couto Construction today. We can help keep you informed so you can get moving on your next home improvement project!