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Americans are coughing up $4,600 more on average to buy their dream home than six months ago, thanks to a record run-up in prices for a once-cheap plywood substitute.

Prices are on a tear for those bonded wood-chip sheets commonly used as sheathing for walls, floors, and roofs in new home construction. Oriented Strand Board, or OSB, has long been used as a low-cost alternative to plywood, but the product now fetches a higher price as increased demand and tight supplies lead to delivery delays and elevated construction costs in the United States and Canada.

Surging wood prices

While the rally is hurting builders and buyers of new houses who already suffered from surging lumber prices earlier this year, it’s bringing windfalls to manufacturers.

Source: Seattle Times

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