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June 26, 2017
According to Turner Construction Company’s quarterly Building Cost Index, the tight labor market is a driver in construction cost escalation.
Turner Construction Company announced that the Second Quarter 2017 Turner Building Cost Index—which measures costs in the non-residential building construction market in the United States—has increased to a value of 1031. This represents a 1.18% quarterly increase from the First Quarter 2017 and a 4.88% yearly increase from the Second Quarter 2016.
The Second Quarter has seen relatively consistent cost increases across the country, with raw material prices continuing to make moderate gains – particularly among aluminum materials. Engineered products have also seen moderate gains. Additionally, fuel costs have remained relatively flat, having little effect on costs.
“The steady pace of construction starts across the country is continuing to have an impact on the skilled labor workforce,” said Attilio Rivetti, the Turner Vice President who prepares the Cost Index. “As a result, we are seeing subcontractors exercise greater caution in their pursuits. Their selective approach to bidding—so as not to become overburdened—also contributes to increased prices.”
Turner has prepared the construction cost forecast for more than 80 years. Used widely by the construction industry and Federal and State governments, the building costs and price trends tracked by the Turner Building Cost Index may or may not reflect regional conditions in any given quarter. The Cost Index is determined by several factors considered on a nationwide basis, including labor rates and productivity, material prices and the competitive condition of the marketplace. This index does not necessarily conform to other published indices because others do not generally take all of these factors into account.