Price rises in 2021

Surveyors are braced for a 10% rise in materials prices over the next 12 months as the construction supply chain struggles to keep up with increasing workloads.

Shortage of staff was also flagged as a major problem in the latest RICS Construction and Infrastructure Survey for Q2 2021.

A +38% (net balance) of respondents reported rising workloads with the private residential sector and infrastructure leading the way.

The survey found 82% of respondents experienced  a shortage of materials, up from 57% previously, while the cost of materials is expected to increase by nearly 10% over the next twelve months – ahead of the 7% growth anticipated for tender prices.

Shortages of skilled labour and ‘white-collar’ roles were also widespread.

Surveyors predict construction workloads will continue to gather pace, with a net balance of +55% saying more activity is expected next year.

“Infrastructure and private housebuilding are viewed as likely to remain the most buoyant areas of the industry. Yet it is abundantly clear that a couple of issues present big challenges. Most notably at this point, the availability of building materials stands out as a key problem for respondents to the RICS survey.

“But almost as significantly, labour and skills are increasingly being cited as obstacles for businesses looking to build out existing commitments or embark on new projects. For the time being, the issue appears most visible regarding skilled trades but quantity surveyors are also being highlighted as an area of growing shortage.

“Unsurprisingly against this backdrop, some concern is being expressed about rising construction costs.”