White House Holds Summit On Housing Industry Supply Chain Issues

As supply chain constraints continue to limit home building, industry leaders met with government officials to plan a course of action.

Last Friday, two Cabinet members and several White House officials met with housing industry leaders to discuss the supply-chain issues affecting homebuilding and the U.S. housing supply. Senior executives from various sectors across the homebuilding industry attended the virtual meeting, including builders, lumber companies, realtors, loggers and labor unions.

“Participants discussed core challenges across the housing supply chain, and helped Administration leaders collect additional input to inform the Administration’s near- and medium-term efforts to further strengthen housing supply,” said the White House’s official statement on the meeting.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, who is committed to resolving the shortage of lumber and other building materials and increasing the U.S. housing supply, hosted the meeting, along with Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Marcia Fudge and others. Several solutions were proposed, including boosting lumber mill production and finding logistical solutions to material shortages.

“The first step is to really get everybody around the table and find out what’s happening, where is the system broken, and what can the industry do better and differently,” Raimondo told Bloomberg in an interview before the meeting.

“Some issues relate to logistics, so if there’s anything that the government can do to help with ports and other modes of transportation, we want to know about that.”

The National Association of Home Builders released a statement after the meeting, praising the summit as a move in the right direction for the industry while conceding the problem is far from over.

“While today’s White House meeting was a step forward, we are not out of the woods yet,” the NAHB statement said.

“Looking ahead, we will remain laser-focused on not only lowering lumber prices and increasing supply, but also keeping pressure on policymakers to improve supply chains for all building materials in order to protect housing affordability.”

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