HEARD: We're only building right now because people are paying cash


As we wrote, the cost of housing has risen so high that lenders are turning down loans. “A $400,000 house is now $500,000 to build,” says Kraig Lassig, owner of Lautz Lassig Custom Builders. “Banks are saying no, it's not worth that. I am fortunate to build for some people who have a lot of money and are still willing to build.”

Lassig spoke along with other members at a meeting of the La Crosse Area Builders Association with Representative and La Crosse County Board Representative Steve Doyle.

Mark Etrheim, owner of MasterCraft Homes added, “Two-thirds [of home sales] are cash sales. That's real. We used to get 20 with 90-95% financing.”

“The smart people are still using the loan,” Lassig said. “I'm building a $2 million house. They took out a loan. They don't need to, but they're making 10-15% off the stock market. The loan is only 4%”

Etrheim stated that 17% of a new home cost is for lumber. Now it is at 30%, with price changes occurring daily. He says, “On a $500,000 home, that's $85,000. When the price of lumber doubles, [that's a lot of money]!"

Cost 2 Years Ago


$ Cost Now

(Engineered Plywood):
Cost 2 Years Ago


$ Cost Now

Vicki Markussen
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Author: Vicki Markussen

CEO/Founder, Engage Greater La Crosse



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