February 11, 2022

3 Lumber Related Ways to Reduce Build Costs

Is the increasing cost of lumber affecting your bottom line?

According to the National Association of Home Builders, framing lumber, including installation costs, accounts for about 18% of the average home’s build price. And with new tariffs on Canadian softwood, that percentage is increasing.

If you’re seeking ways to reduce build costs without sacrificing build quality, DPIS has some advice for you.

#1. Frame Engineering Can Reduce the Amount of Lumber Needed

One of the best ways to reduce build costs is to reduce the amount of lumber needed.

DPIS Frame Engineering takes the smart approach by meticulously pinpointing strut locations onto beams. This minimizes the number of struts needed while still providing outstanding structural integrity to the homes. And the smaller beam sizes required in this process exponentially reduces the amount of lumber required.

#2. Double Checking Your Lumber Shipment Can Reduce Costly Errors


We recently highlighted a few costly errors our inspectors have prevented. Another error that can occur in the supply chain is receiving and then installing the wrong lumber.

Occasionally, your job site may receive a shipment of Common #3 when plans called for Common #2, and if you don’t have someone checking the lumber before install, you’ll be liable for the error.

Hopefully, it’s only a matter of changing out a few boards with a stronger material, but if you frame a whole house with SPF that was specified to be framed with SYP, you’ll need to invest time and money to correct the issue.

#3. Using Engineered Wood Can Reduce Labor Costs

Finally, changing the type of lumber you use, when applicable, can help you build faster.

When building with standard 2x12"s, any given shipment could have discrepancies of at least 3/8" in crowning especially. Using this standard lumber to build a level subfloor, for example, may require having to shim or shave a few pieces which will slow down the building process.

On the other hand, using engineered or manufactured wood like Glulam or Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) will provide you with more consistent lumber that can installed faster, therefore, minimizing your labor costs.

For additional ways to save money and build better, contact us.