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Most builders and remodelers were affected by the swings in lumber prices during the past year — remember lumber quotes that were only good for 24 hours? The increases were all the more shocking because lumber prices have been mostly flat through the last decade (adjusted for inflation) and only recently began to reflect the pricing fluctuations common with other commodities. As subsidized timber sales end and additional environmental pressures emerge, lumber prices will continue to fluctuate and increase. The $64,000 question is, What can we do about it? Start using something else? My company has almost 20 years of design/build general contracting experience in a variety of commercial and residential work. We've always used steel framing in commercial applications and wood framing in residential projects. Why? In large part because "that's