This Home Necessity Is Disappearing From Store Shelves

Experts say a shortage may make this one household staple very hard to find.

Sprucing up your home in the spring and summer might have already been on your agenda, and you may feel even more drawn to the idea now that you can go back to inviting guests over after more than a year of being stuck inside by yourself. Unfortunately, one of the many complications of the COVID pandemic could actually hamper your home improvement plans. Lockdowns and temporary business closures disrupted the supply chains for countless products, including some you might be counting on. Experts are now noting that one home necessity is disappearing from store shelves due to a shortage. Read on to find out which product might be hard to find on your next shopping trip.

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Experts say a paint shortage is hitting stores.

couple choosing a paint type for their home remodel
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If you're looking to redecorate your home in the near future, you may want to leave painting off your to-do list. Experts say it could be hard to find the paint you need. "Some of the most common used paints are out of stock," Mike Marcewicz, founder of Mike's Painting and Home Improvements, told Bay News 9. According to Chemical & Engineering News, paint makers are not receiving their full orders of raw materials and having to pay higher prices for the supply they do get, which has led to a fewer paint products hitting store shelves.

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The paint shortage was exacerbated by this year's major winter storm.

The workers put the yellow color printing machine
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Paint supply chain Sherwin-Williams was already suffering as a result of the COVID pandemic. However, the February winter storm that hit Texas added further constraints to the supply chain. "In an already-challenged supply chain due to COVID-19, the February natural disaster in Texas further impacted the complex petrochemical network causing significant disruptions," the company explained to Bay News.

Texas leads the nation in petroleum refining production, which is necessary in manufacturing paint, according to Business Insider. The winter storm reduced the state's capacity to refine petroleum, which created a ripple effect for a reduced ability to manufacture nearly all paints.

Increased demand for paint is not helping the situation either.

Low angle view of young man painting wall in his apartment.
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This paint shortage is coming at a time when demand for paint is increasing—which will only make things worse, experts say. We're approaching painting season, after all. Summer is typically regarded as painting season because it is the optimal time to paint your home exterior due to warm weather and scarce rain, according to Teel Painting. "We're backed up about two-and-a-half months right now, waiting for materials to get in. It's kind of scary because the demand is there, but the supply is low both with materials and labor," Marcewicz told Bay News.

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You'll likely have to pay more for the paints that you can find.

woman in crafts store selecting paints and brushes for her works
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If you do find any paint in stores, it will likely be marked up from what you're used to paying. Sherwin-Williams has already issued a price increase on consumer paint brands as a result of shortages and increased pricing of raw materials. And more price hikes may be coming.

"We likely will need to take further pricing actions if raw material costs remain at these elevated levels," John Morikis, CEO of Sherwin-Williams, warned during a company earnings call in late April, ICIS reported. Even professional painting services will probably be increasing their rates. Murphy Bros., a design-based company in Minnesota, usually charges on average between $500 and $600 for a professionally painted bedroom, but this price is expected to jump by $100 to $200 soon as a result of raw material shortages and price increases, they warn.

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Kali Coleman
Kali is an assistant editor at Best Life. Read more
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