Building a new home during the pandemic has earned a badge of bravery for those willing to take it on, especially with a shortage of building materials and delays in getting it into the country.  Added to this increased demand and surge in prices, many owners and builders have had to opt for other, more expensive product alternatives. That means, not only does the owner end up with something they didn’t really want, but they have also paid more for the privilege.

Having an effective project plan for building a house has never been more important

It hasn’t been an easy time for builders.  Since the pandemic and COVID outbreak, outdoor project planning and management tools and strategies have had to change to meet new work and business challenges. This has seen the introduction of innovative procedures, systems and platforms that are gradually replacing those which are proving unable to meet modern workplace needs.  However, the smartest new gadgetry cannot help if simple, basic common sense is ignored.

Having an effective “building a house” project management plan has never been more important than it is now. As far back as early-mid-2021, the media has been trumpeting how timber shortages are threatening bankrupt builders who are unable to complete existing projects or take on new ones. 

Delayed shipment is not just Australia’s issue

Shipments have been delayed globally, not only by circumstances resulting from the pandemic, but also by the Suez canal blockage episode, and extreme weather conditions. 

Further blame has been placed on the industry’s reliance on just-in-time manufacturing and delivery schedules, which were and continue to be largely interrupted by lockdowns.  It is not only the end-user, or seller, that is inconvenienced by the lack of stock.  Consider the manufacturers who also rely on deliveries of parts and products required by themselves to enable their own continued production. 

Add to this the closure of shipping ports and loading/offloading delays, many if not most of the world’s major ports are experiencing long turnaround times.  We have all seen the images of mass shipping anchored offshore, unable to dock.  Even when ships did arrive in Australia, ports in Melbourne and Sydney experienced closures because of employees who tested positive for the virus.

All of these factors contribute to the difficulty of holding and maintaining adequate stock levels along the supply chain, and the question is, how do you safeguard your project timeline under these circumstances?

How to safeguard your project timeline?

Whether you are a large commercial builder, a smaller self-employed subbie, or a home do-it-yourself handyman, if you plan to complete your project within a certain timeframe, ensure you are able to buy the necessary supplies, and that stocks are adequate if you cannot buy them everything you need upfront.  Be sure to work these timeframes into your building project management plan.

Also, have a contingency plan in place, should something on your list suddenly become unavailable.  For example, what alternative products exist and are available that you could use if you have to?

Ideally, when installing items like timber flooring, decking and cladding, you want to be able to buy from the same batch due to changes in colour sometimes being noticeable.  Of course, it can also be unavoidable, when a customer decides to extend the area, or some boards become damaged and need to be replaced.  In this case, it is best to take a sample of the existing product with you so you can match it up as perfectly as possible with other different batches.

You are more likely to run into difficulty if you have bought from an already diminishing supply and when you do need to buy extra, it is out of stock.  With the manufacturing and shipping delays in Australia, your project timelines can blow out. So, check first and make sure everything you need is already well-stocked in Australia.

Creating a realistic “building a house” project plan will help to keep you motivated and on track time-wise. Just be sure to consult it on a regular basis and update it as the project progresses.

Choose companies that have been highly adaptable

The good news is that some companies, like NewTechWood have been highly adaptable and capable and have taken into account all recent changes. As such, for 2022, we have planned ahead, and our warehouses are fully stocked with most profiles, so people can get on with their projects. 

You can always contact our head office in Perth to ascertain if adequate quantities exist for your specific project, and if not, we can tell you when we expect it, so you can plan accordingly. But keep in mind that NewTechWood products are highly sought-after, and contact your local NewTechWood reseller to secure your order.

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