What the heck happened to prices ?

mikester

Comic Book Super Hero
Mar 10, 2010
2,649
113
Small town NY
A little background story.
My small house was built in 1900. My folks bought it in '82 and I bought it from them in '87 when I got married. Old house, needed a lot of work. A year after I bought it I gutted the whole main level to the studs. A few years later I did the upstairs which was a converted 1/2 story. Basically a finished attic.
Back in '93 I had a new roof put on, changed up the front porch and built a 16x20 deck with first generation composite decking and clear cedar posts and rails.
For the last few years we were talking about leaving this over taxed sandbar and heading south. Now that plan changed a bit. My two kids have really good jobs. My son and his wife are currently renting a house two doors down from mine. My heart hiccup was also a factor. It made me realize how lucky I was to be close to a really good hospital. So, it looks like Im here until Im in the ground.
Now after all these years things are starting to show their age. About 6 weeks ago I had a skylite shatter. Not sure how but the outer glass is in a milion pieces. Good thing theres an inner layer. The roof was starting to show its age 4-5 years ago. Garage is about the same. Bilco door is from '82 and starting to rot in one spot. The cement stairwell has multiple cracks. Deck cedar is really in rough shape. Honestly, I didnt want to sink a ton of cash into a place we were planning on selling. But now that we're staying its time to pay. UGH
I hope the prices out of my area are less for folks working on their homes. NY/LI prices suck. I went to two lumber yards to price out a new front door. Therma-tru fiberglass craftsman style door. Rain glass at the top and composite jambs. Nothing crazy. $5700 !!!. My buddy in VA bought 12' composite tongue and groove porch flooring for $47. Here a 16' piece is $119. Same brand, 4' longer. Clear cedar 8' 4x4s are $180. Clear cedar 1x6 is $11.25 a ft. Is it that bad everywhere ?
The roofs on the house and garage are a little under $20K. My irrigation system was put in 12 years ago by someone that I knew. He didnt put in enough heads and the ones he put in are too far apart so I have huge areas of dead grass. Had a guy come on Thursday to give me a price on redoing it. My property is .67 of an acre. $5K. Is this the normal price ? Am I that out of touch with current prices ? Holy crap ! We applied for a home improvement loan. House has been paid off for at least 15 years. Im wondering if we took out enough to pay for all that needs to be done.
 
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airboatgreg

Comic Book Super Hero
Oct 2, 2016
2,747
113
Building supplies and labor is crazy. Will get worse with Hurricane Ian. I just did some stuff in South Georgia. Putting a bathroom in the barn. I was shocked
 
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Streetbu

Know it all, that doesn't
May 22, 2011
3,353
113
Central NY
Your prices are definitely higher than normal, but that's the typical NYC/LI tax that you should be used to paying. Besides that, yes everything has gone up, and gone up exponentially. People that are working, aren't willing to take a job because they need it, they are booked solid for over a year often times. So they price accordingly. If you're willing to pay that much, they are willing to do the work. Otherwise they move on to the next customer of which there seems to be no shortage. Skilled labor has been undervalued for a long time and it seems as though that changed all at once. Now people are shocked at the sudden jump. Thank Covid. Good luck.
 
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mikester

Comic Book Super Hero
Thread starter
Mar 10, 2010
2,649
113
Small town NY
Your prices are definitely higher than normal, but that's the typical NYC/LI tax that you should be used to paying. Besides that, yes everything has gone up, and gone up exponentially. People that are working, aren't willing to take a job because they need it, they are booked solid for over a year often times. So they price accordingly. If you're willing to pay that much, they are willing to do the work. Otherwise they move on to the next customer of which there seems to be no shortage. Skilled labor has been undervalued for a long time and it seems as though that changed all at once. Now people are shocked at the sudden jump. Thank Covid. Good luck.
Youre comment about guys working is spot on. A woman down my street just remodeled her house which is a bit smaller than mine and a single story. Gutted and a big $$$ kitchen. Sad thing is they put over $80K into the outside just when Covid started. She said this inside reno was close to $200K. Shes spending all that cash and the house is still the same small size. I think shes nuts but we all have our opinions. Anyway, I stopped to talk to the contractor doing the job. Thought I might be able to get him to do the porch and deck. He said he would stop at the end of the day. Didnt show for three weeks but he passed my house multiple times a day. The day I stopped we started talking about jobs he was doing. His helper turned around and said theyve given the F you price to people in the past. I guess Ive been away from this stuff for so long I didnt know what he meant. He says if they dont want to do the job they give a really high price. If the people go for it they do the work. If they think its too high they say F you and pass on it. Nice huh ? I know this kids parents. His mom is a friend of mine on FB. In the end he came by, looked at the porch. Said he was afraid to remove the two columns because they were supporting the upper corner of the house. He wouldnt do it without having an engineer inspect it. The last time it was done the crew used 4x6s and 2x4s to brace the whole thing. It took them 5 hours to put in two new columns. That was 20 years ago. His last words the day he came over was you know Im not cheap. I told him it didnt matter as long as he could do the work. He never called back but hes doing work on another house further down the street. SMFH
 
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Bonnewagon

Geezer
Sep 18, 2009
8,847
113
Queens, NY
how lucky I was to be close to a really good hospital
A buddy of mine is a snow-bird and spends winters in Florida. He says the medical down there is so bad he waits to come home to NYC for anything medical. As for building materials, guess what the wildfires out West are consuming? WOOD! A friend of mine works for the Bureau of Land Management and he says the loss of forests will take decades to recover. Also, few guys are getting into hands-on construction anymore. Everyone wants an inside job with climate control. So the remaining contractors can dictate what and when they will do work. Another reason I am glad I can do plumbing, electrical, welding, painting, masonry, just about anything.
 
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mikester

Comic Book Super Hero
Thread starter
Mar 10, 2010
2,649
113
Small town NY
I've been looking @houses for the past few years and it's a tire fire..
Im sure its just like LI up in MA. Rich citiots moved out of NYC in droves when Covid started. People that were summer renters were buying up everything on the market. Lots were and still are able to work from home. They drove the house and land prices way up. Not much vacant property left in my little podunk town. Thats where most of the contractors are working these days. New homes and big dollar total renovations. The lumber yards are making a fortune. Just one more reason I wish I would have moved years ago. Dealing with the city people is bad enough. Now theres more traffic, higher prices in the local restaurants, it affects just about everything.
I have friends in PA, CT and upstate NY. Its happening there too. Now that elections are coming up you can see where the new city people live. LOL
 
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mikester

Comic Book Super Hero
Thread starter
Mar 10, 2010
2,649
113
Small town NY
A buddy of mine is a snow-bird and spends winters in Florida. He says the medical down there is so bad he waits to come home to NYC for anything medical. As for building materials, guess what the wildfires out West are consuming? WOOD! A friend of mine works for the Bureau of Land Management and he says the loss of forests will take decades to recover. Also, few guys are getting into hands-on construction anymore. Everyone wants an inside job with climate control. So the remaining contractors can dictate what and when they will do work. Another reason I am glad I can do plumbing, electrical, welding, painting, masonry, just about anything.

I just spoke to the owner of the local 7-11 just yesterday. I heard he recently had a heart issue. He was at his place in FL and started having chest pain. He spent three days in the hospital down there and they told him he was fine. No issues and sent him home. His wife wasnt too satisfied with what the doc said so they flew back up here. The pain had stopped. He made an appointment to see his cardiologist. The next day he wound up in the ER. They catherized him and found 3 arteries blocked. Triple bypass that night. But according to the docs in FL he was fine. Kinda scary.
 
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blk7gxn

Royal Smart Person
Feb 7, 2019
1,378
113
I'd wait on those repairs that can wait, until this over inflated market crashes, and at the rate its going it will be less than two years. Yes, everything seems to ratchet up the ladder and then falls back, but not to the level it was, unfortunately.

I remember years back predicting the values of our G body cars and where I thought the market would go on the values, most thought I was nuts when I stated that they can triple from their original MSRP, and here we are in 2022, just look at clean original examples asking and SOLD prices...Just like Mikes thermal front door replacement cost at $5700! I bet the original price to build that house didn't cost that, all boils down to the value of the dollar, and as everyone can see, its crap. The government already wants America to go digital currency, probably so Americans won't be standing in line at the grocery store with a wheelbarrow full of money to buy one loaf of bread. The pace of inflation used to move kind of slowly, but seems those times are in the passing lane heading for an inevitable crash, IMHO. Yes, value on goods, property etc. increase as life's timeline moves forward, but mostly inflation is the main source of fuel on this one.

Good luck Mike on your repairs, I truly hope you can find a way to reduce some of that overall cost

-Will
 
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