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From tree houses to fire pits, DIY projects help increase timber prices: NPR



With the help of children in Knoxville, Tennessee, resident Mat Harris made a finishing touch on the tree house he dreamed of on Dream Day.

Matt Harris


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Matt Harris

With the help of children in Knoxville, Tennessee, resident Mat Harris made a finishing touch on the tree house he dreamed of on Dream Day.

Matt Harris

For many years, Matt Harris had dreamed of building a tree house behind the back fence in Knoxville, Tennessee, but he didn’t walk around until the pandemic came.

Harris said: “It’s just a matter of finding time.” “It didn’t happen until everything was closed a little bit.”

When the coronavirus canceled the youth movement this season, Harris suddenly found himself free on the weekend. His children (8, 7 and 4 years old, respectively) sent a helpful construction worker.

Harris said: “They are good measurers and wood markers.” “You don’t have to let children use power tools. But as far as they can help, [with], They are passionate about it. ”

When Harris set out to buy supplies, he noticed that many other households seemed to be working on their own projects.

Harris, an economist at the University of Tennessee, said: “There must be a few days when we went to Lowe, where it looked like a group of locusts.” “I think the wood industry may be doing well.”

In fact, since the bottom of April, wholesale wood prices have soared by 50%. At $523 per thousand board feet, they are now significantly higher than last year’s level. Sawmills cut output in the spring due to expected to experience a painful recession, but as a result of the pandemic, the demand for sawmills was better than expected.

“People are stuck at home and unable to travel, so they put a lot of energy into projects around the house,” Shawn Church said. Random length, An industry trade magazine. “This creates considerable demand for the fence and deck [and] The treated wood is famous for the do-it-yourself department. “

Just as food companies that are used to serving restaurants during the pandemic sometimes serve home cooks, wood companies are also adjusting because the needs of backyard builders are different from those of professional builders.

Church said: “The do-it-yourself industry is also called’shoulder trade’.” “Considering this image, you will see a lot of shorter lengths of wood-8 feet and 10 feet.”

In other words, whether it is suitable for personal pickups or SUV backs.

Home Depot’s half-empty shelf is not the only sign of prosperity. LendingTree said that the demand for home improvement loans last month increased by nearly 8% over the same period last year. The number of Google searches has also surged, such as “how to build a deck” and “how to build a shed.”

Kevin Slover’s new fire pit has become a popular meeting place where neighbors can sit six feet apart.

Kevin Slover


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Kevin Slover

Kevin Slover’s new fire pit has become a popular meeting place where neighbors can sit six feet apart.

Kevin Slover

When Kevin Slover decided to build a fire pit and stone terrace outside his house in Pullman, Washington, he turned to YouTube instructional videos for help.

“I have never tried working with rocks,” Slover said. “But I think I will try it. How bad is that?”

The fire pit has become a popular meeting place where neighbors can sit six feet apart. After taking over the fire last month, Slover released a historical mark with dates and symbols: “established during the coronavirus pandemic.”

He said: “The house is 75 years old.” “Assuming it can be used for another 75 years and has more owners, it may just be a conversation.”

Matt Harris made the final modification to the tree house on Father’s Day. It surrounds an old cedar tree with a high ceiling, giving his children room to grow.

He said: “The project is a pleasure.” “You don’t want anyone to participate in 2020. You don’t want anyone to be affected by the pandemic. However, given that it provides us with the opportunity to do one we could not have done You must thank you for your family affairs.”


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