As of May 28th 2021, we've again had to raise the prices on the entire Bellus Wheelie Bin Storage range.
The construction industry has seen a substantial increase in the price of raw materials over the last 12 months, and in particular in the price of timber.
Timber based manufacturers have been hit hard by the price hikes. This has been fulled by an explosion in demand for timber in the housing market, the Covid-19 crisis, a large upsurge in demand in the global DIY market and central banks printing money like it's going out of fashion. All this has caused timber prices to rise steeply.
As a result, the price of our wheelie bin storage units has increased by ~£20 per unit and this is effective from May 28th 2021. This follows from our previous price increase back in April.
Why are prices increasing?
Softwood lumber prices are now totalling around 112% higher than they were a year ago and there are a number of factors contributing to the price increases:
- All bin stores are made using imported Scandinavian redwood and whitewood timber. Increasing transport costs and the decreasing value of the sterling has resulted in the UK becoming a less attractive market to exporters. As a result, an increasing amount of timber produced in Europe is likely to be diverted away from the UK during 2021 and beyond.
- Timber is now being used in more ways than ever not just sheds and wheelie bin stores! For instance, its use for housing developments is on the rise, as it allows them to build new properties much more quickly, and at lower prices.
- Transportation costs are once again increasing, affecting both imports and domestic deliveries. This is especially affecting timber transportation, due to its bulk and weight.
These factors have lead to a national shortage, which in turn increases timber prices and unfortunately, this leaves us with no choice but to follow suit.
Timber is a global commodity and there is an imbalance between global demand and supply that is not likely to be resolved in the near future. The UK must be prepared for higher prices to continue. European production was far lower in 2020 compared to 2019 (Swedish production down 7%, stocks down 27%; Finnish production down 15%). UK imports of softwood during the first nine months of 2020 were also down, by 20% in volume. Production shortages were exacerbated by extremely high demand from the USA – which will continue throughout 2021. The Chinese timber market, which was suppressed during Covid, is now rising with imports of softwood at their highest ever levels. Furthermore, both the US and China are prepared to pay far more for timber. In the US, the price of a benchmark 4×2 softwood product rose by 149% last year. European mills are back at full capacity, but the increased demand means that customers are on allocation, and the situation is likely to get worse in Q3 following holiday shutdowns in July and August.
Is the increase permanent?
The UK government is aware of the current problems but while banks continue to print money, stimulus cheques encourage people to stay at home rather than work and financial terrorism remains rife this will continue to be an issue. As always, we will continue to monitor the situation.