The timber shortage, caused by the massive increase in housing construction, appears to be finally easing. Housing Industry Association economist Angela Lillicrap= says a drop in overseas timber prices, better planning from builders and new support from the Federal Government means projects will now speed up and eventually domestic timber prices will drop.

“It’s not going to get any worse, we’ve seen timber prices in the US and Canada come off quite rapidly so it’s only a matter of time before that extra timber supply comes to Australia,” she says.

About 80% of the timber used in Australian housing construction is still sourced locally but the massive increase in demand as a result of HomeBuilder has meant many looked overseas for supplies.

According to the Master Builders Association timberrelated delays to construction times at the moment are up to three months.

Lillicrap says some builders had to resort to using steel frames instead of timber during the shortages.