24 Mar UNDERSTANDING THE WORLDWIDE PAINT SHORTAGE AND HOW IT AFFECTS YOUR CANADIAN LINE STRIPING BUSINESS
Gone are the days of showing up to your local paint store and picking up a few 5-gallon pails of parking lot traffic paint without having a pre-order in place. All traffic paint suppliers are battling through the shortage of raw materials used to make parking lot paint, and this is creating major challenges to the average sized Parking Lot Maintenance Contractor.
With Roadway Painting Companies and Municipalities getting priority on traffic paint, parking lot contractors are left scrambling to find pallets of paint if/when they might come available. If parking lot painting is your livelihood and how you put food on the table, you can’t afford to be left without traffic paint.
What is causing the paint shortage / delays.
Extreme Freight Delays – Parking Lot Paint Suppliers like us source materials from a number of manufacturers, including Oils, Latex, Thinners and Pigment – Elevated transit times for trucking, rail and ocean freight have added weeks or even months to lead times on many critical materials, resulting in a large backlog to production.
Raw Material Shortages – Just like the paint factory, the supplier that sells them raw material is having the same challenges as described above, causing a further challenge in securing materials. This is happening with all types of Traffic Paint. Water Based, Oil Based, Acetone, Etc
Increased Demand – Government stimulus, plus changes in buyer behaviors triggered by covid-19 rules have created a boom in consumer demand for paints for houses / renovations, causing many paint suppliers to pivot production to serve these markets and taking away focus from smaller industries like road paint
How long are delays expected to last?
It’s very hard to predict exactly when things will return to normal – but given the current state of the markets and supply chains, it’s almost certain that shortages will continue through the summer and well into fall. There is a good chance that production issues continue into next year.
What can you do to minimize the risk to your business?
Forecast – By considering your existing jobs, the quotes you’ve put out and ultimately what you are likely to consume in paint for the remainder of the year, you can confidently order paint well in advance to ensure you have it when you need it.
Order in Advance – Once you’ve calculated what you think your max need is for the year, you should be pre-ordering 100% of the supply you need in advance. In doing this, you can give your supplier a forecast on the paint you need for each month going forward, a good supplier will take your forecast and plan well in advance to ensure they can deliver the paint you need when you need it. You may also be able to accomplish this with little to no money out of pocket.
Stock – If you have the space for it and cashflow isn’t an issue, consider ordering and holding extra paint in your shop or place of business – this gives you an additional layer of security over simply placing advance orders. If you have forecasted properly, then you know it’s likely you’ll use the supply.
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