Even as U.S. housing rebounds from its worst downturn since the 1930s, production bottlenecks are pushing up building-materials costs, land prices are rising and skilled labor ready to begin work is hard to find.
Paul Laney landed a job two months ago as a home inspector in Woodstock, Georgia, as the city added staff to oversee a growing residential construction industry. “I am really ecstatic about it,” said Laney, 52, who closed his own contracting business in 2007.
John Cataneo is working his 20 employees overtime and still can’t keep up with demand from customers who need plumbing repaired after superstorm Sandy. He says he’s hired two new workers and may need more.