One huge part of the US economy that’s been experiencing major labour shortages is the construction sector.
From carpenters to masons to painters to roofers, builders just can’t seem to find enough people for open jobs.
Chris Porter at John Burns Real Estate Consulting believes that much of this can be explained by changes in immigration, particularly with Mexico.
Porter identified five factors: 1) significantly higher border patrol investments; 2) acceleration in court-ordered deportations over the last 7 years; 3) implementation of E-Verify technology by employers; 4) Arizona’s SB 1070 bill passing in 2010; and 5) economic opportunity in Mexico.
According to Census data cited by Porter, Mexican immigration has dropped by 67% since 2006.
“Today, the U.S. has 570,000 fewer construction workers born in Mexico than at the peak in 2007,” Porter said.
All of this means higher construction costs for builders as they compete for a smaller, potentially more expensive pool of qualified workers. This ultimately could lead to higher home prices as well as costs rise.
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