Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Dealing with Surplus Building Materials in Construction

The other day I visited the site of a couple of our customers, building materials distributors in Northern California. I started thinking about the sheer volume of  surplus building materials I saw around the warehouse. Here is a selection of some of the pictures I took, as well as a few questions that came to mind.

Does your company have surplus building materials that have been lying around far too long but which are actually still useful? Do you wish you knew where to donate the excess from your recently completed project? Has your local city, county or state recently outlawed the use of a product that is perfectly legal somewhere else in the country? Is the excess in the way of the new products or—worse yet—a hazard to your customers or employees?

What gripes do you have about surplus or reusable building materials? What would help you unload the excess? Please leave a comment and let me know. We’re thinking about it and would like to help.

We know there are some excesses out there… How about at your location?


  1. Most surplus materials are auctioned in public or private. They cannot be used on another project as a carry-over.

  2. Material estimation is important in the early stage of construction. This is to avoid an excess surplus of materials whenever possible.


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