Strong Post-Pandemic Recovery Expected for Flooring Wood Panel Market

Demand for wood panels used in flooring applications is forecast to increase 1.1% annually through 2024 to 9.3 million square feet, as measured on a 3/8 inch basis despite a significant drop in 2020 due to declines in new homebuilding activity and a heavy drop in commercial construction spending amid the Covid-19 pandemic. However, demand is expected to rebound in 2021 and continue to expand through 2024, driven by:

  • a rebound in new single-family home construction
  • rising spending on home renovation projects
  • rising consumer preferences for engineered wood flooring over competing products like carpet and natural wood

Wood Panel Subflooring Demand to Drive Growth Through 2024

Subflooring accounted for 85% of wood panels used in flooring applications in 2019 and will provide the majority of demand growth through 2024, driven by rising spending on home renovations such as flooring replacement or more extensive projects like room additions.

Shifts in flooring preferences will also support gains, as the increasing popularity of high-quality, hard surface flooring products will lead to greater use of multilayer flooring – and therefore to demand for the wood panels used as substrates in some of these products.

Demand for Engineered Wood Flooring Demand to Boost Finish Flooring Market

Finish flooring is among the fastest growing applications for wood panel products, despite the declining popularity of laminates, due largely to quick gains in demand for engineered wood floors. Consumers increasingly prefer hard surface flooring throughout their home, and engineered wood floors offer a favorable wood aesthetic at a lesser cost than natural wood, as well as performance advantages.

Though engineered wood floors face strong competition from luxury vinyl tile (LVT) because of LVT’s low cost, durability, and ability to be installed by DIYers, LVT does not as convincingly mimic the aesthetic of natural wood, which provides engineered wood products with an advantage.

Want to Learn More?

Flooring Wood Panels is now available from The Freedonia Group. This study examines the US market for wood panels (building boards) used in flooring applications. This includes structural boards (oriented strand board (OSB) and softwood plywood) and nonstructural boards:

  • hardwood plywood
  • particleboard
  • others (medium density fiberboard (MDF), hardboard, insulation board, and low density fiberboard (softboard))

Flooring applications include subflooring and finish flooring for the new and improvement and repair sectors of residential and commercial buildings.

Historical data for 2009, 2014, and 2019 and forecasts to the years 2024 and 2029 are provided for flooring wood panels demand in square feet.