Inflation, shipping delays impact hurricane preparations

Experts: Now is the time to make upgrades, buy supplies
Tropical Weather
Posted at 9:40 AM, May 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-04 09:40:48-04

Hurricane season is less than 30 days away and inflation is at an all-time high. High prices and delayed deliveries are likely going to impact how you prepare for a storm.

If you plan to make upgrades to your home, buy hurricane impact windows or a new roof, experts say now is the time.

“As an industry, I’d say we are still on the longer end of the delivery time,” said Tat Granata.

Granata, a home improvement expert in South Florida, said the delivery time for hurricane impact windows can take anywhere from four to six months.

Construction materials overall are decreasing compared to January prices, but the latest Producer Price Index report shows costs up 23% from last year. That’s the same case for plywood.

“I remember last year you can pay like $20 for a sheet now it’s like $45 something like that,” said Humberto Martinez.

Tropical Weather Florida
Empty shelves where water is sold at a grocery store are shown, Friday, Aug. 30, 2019, in North Miami, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

Martinez is regretting giving away his plywood supply last year. He’s planning on biting the bullet soon and stocking up.

“I’m going to buy ahead of time because when the storm comes there’s nothing left,” he said.

It appears portable generator stock is back up compared to a shortage last year.

“I do have a generator and I fire it up about every month just to make sure everything is fine,” said Victor Conlin.

But this year, Conlin knows with gas prices up 48% compared to this time last year, powering the generator is going to cost more.

“It’s either spend the extra money or go without anything,” he said.

However you prepare, Granata said vet your list of contractors now.

“After a hurricane, you start to see the contractors come into town and chase the storm and they don’t really know the permitting process and inspection process in Florida,” he said. “Homeowners now more than ever make sure you’re choosing a reliable contractor and somebody you really trust.”