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Old 01-12-2011, 07:44 AM   #1
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


I'm fixing to make a pretty decent purchase of lumber for a project. It will be in the neighborhood of around $1500 +/-. This calculation is based on the local Lowes home improvement store. Several people have told me I will get better quality lumber and materials and a better price if I buy from a Lumber specialty company or building supplier.

I'm going to try and get the complete list up so i can submit it to a few companies. It will consist of sheets of OSB, various framing lumber pieces and sizes and a couple of riolls of felt.

The only downside I can see to buying at Lowes is that I will have to sort through each and every piece to try and find what I want, load and deliver myself..vs way better quality from the get go and having it delivered from a lumber co. - and possibly better price. Some pieces - like the long ridge boards and other various pieces have to be bought at a lumber yard anyway because Lowes doesn't have them in in greater lengths.

What are your thoughts?

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Old 01-12-2011, 07:59 AM   #2
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


You pretty much answered your own question! Support your local lumberyard.
My favorite lumberyard has FREE delivery.... I've saved hundreds because of this, AND I didn't have to look through tons of pieces already picked over to try to find good ones.....

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Old 01-12-2011, 08:10 AM   #3
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


Just bought two stacks of "bargain" 2x's at Lowe's. They were 10 footers for $1.67 a piece. Unfortunately, Lowe's put the 2 straight 2x's on top and those underneath were shaped like boomerangs. Shoulda known better...........they had them wrapped in plastic so you couldn't inspect them properly.
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Old 01-12-2011, 08:16 AM   #4
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


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Just bought two stacks of "bargain" 2x's at Lowe's. They were 10 footers for $1.67 a piece. Unfortunately, Lowe's put the 2 straight 2x's on top and those underneath were shaped like boomerangs. Shoulda known better...........they had them wrapped in plastic so you couldn't inspect them properly.
Take them back. I never buy from the box stores . You see what you got. A good lesson ??
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Old 01-12-2011, 08:21 AM   #5
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


Many things at the big box stores are as high or higher than the supply houses---They low balled their prices in order to kill the competition and have slowly raised prices---

Hardwood is much cheaper at Owl Hardwood--My plumbing supplier sells Kohler tubs at the same price as Depot and will deliver free --Decking is better and cheaper a The Deck Yard---

Unfortunately most lumber yards in this area are gone--Two Plumbing houses folded--It's getting harder to avoid shopping at the Big Box stores.---Mike---
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Old 01-12-2011, 08:57 AM   #6
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


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Originally Posted by J S Machine View Post
I'm fixing to make a pretty decent purchase of lumber for a project. It will be in the neighborhood of around $1500 +/-. This calculation is based on the local Lowes home improvement store. Several people have told me I will get better quality lumber and materials and a better price if I buy from a Lumber specialty company or building supplier.

I'm going to try and get the complete list up so i can submit it to a few companies. It will consist of sheets of OSB, various framing lumber pieces and sizes and a couple of riolls of felt.

The only downside I can see to buying at Lowes is that I will have to sort through each and every piece to try and find what I want, load and deliver myself..vs way better quality from the get go and having it delivered from a lumber co. - and possibly better price. Some pieces - like the long ridge boards and other various pieces have to be bought at a lumber yard anyway because Lowes doesn't have them in in greater lengths.

What are your thoughts?
You have already answered your own question. What are you waiting for? Even if Lowe's was cheaper, it's because your not getting the same quality lumber, so that means they are not cheaper. Let's say that you were comparing apples to apples and the lumberyard was the same price, why would you not use them?
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:02 AM   #7
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


Ok well i guess i will call the local lumber yard and see what kind of price they can get me and ask about delivery.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:14 AM   #8
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


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Ok well i guess i will call the local lumber yard and see what kind of price they can get me and ask about delivery.
Make sure you are comparing apples to apples with the lumber. That's how lowe's and home depot mislead people. They do not give you the same quality lumber as a lumberyard does.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:17 AM   #9
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


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Take them back. I never buy from the box stores . You see what you got. A good lesson ??
Del, I'm 50 years old so I learned this lesson a long, long time ago. Dummy me, I gambled thinking they can't be all that bad for framing up a basement wall. Time was wasted & YES, the lesson was reinforced. Unfortunately, many local lumber yards are no longer in existence in many areas.
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Old 01-12-2011, 12:03 PM   #10
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


When we started building our log home ourselves, I went to the local 84 Lumber store. Told them I wasn't a contractor but I'd be buying a lot of lumber, siding, etc. and wanted contractor pricing. I got that and free delivery as well.
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Old 01-12-2011, 12:11 PM   #11
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


The nearest 84 lumber is about 30 miles from me. I wonder if they will come that far for free with a delivery.
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Old 01-12-2011, 12:40 PM   #12
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


Not much choice here. One discount lumberyard, all seconds and junk, one big box, not much better than the discount place, one builder's lumberyard, the employees won't even wait on DIYers. they want contractors only. Nothing else for 60 miles.
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Old 01-12-2011, 01:58 PM   #13
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


I was afraid I might get turned down because I'm not a contractor, but the one lumber yard I have been talking to today has been very helpful.
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Old 01-12-2011, 02:01 PM   #14
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


I've been buying studs for my basement from HD, and have had decent findings. It takes a few minutes to sort through, but I only buy about 50 at a time. Menards has better prices, and I've heard better lumber - but haven't been there to try it out. I wanted to use the local lumber yard, but at over $1 more per stud, it just wasn't economical.
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Old 01-12-2011, 02:28 PM   #15
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Cheapest place to buy lumber - home improvement store or lumber supplier?


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I've been buying studs for my basement from HD, and have had decent findings. It takes a few minutes to sort through, but I only buy about 50 at a time. Menards has better prices, and I've heard better lumber - but haven't been there to try it out. I wanted to use the local lumber yard, but at over $1 more per stud, it just wasn't economical.
I have had several people tell me they are cheaper and better quality but I'm not sure. I've heard the other way too like you say - more expensive. All I can do is send them a list of what I need and hope it comes out better than a box store. I'm really hoping it does because they can deliver for $10, and I won't have to worry with going to the store and picking through everything and loading unloading my truck.

I talked to a "salesman" today from one of the places. I guess this means they are probably on commission, and hopefully that won't get added into the price..

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