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Emerson Claus has been building houses for 45 years. But he has never faced delays like he is now trying to get basic building materials. “I had a client ask me to add a door,” he says at a job site outside Boston. “We just waited six months to get it.”

“That’s a door in a frame,” Claus says, exasperated. “That’s kind of crazy.” He says appliances can be even worse. “A dishwasher, if you can find the model you want right now, you might wait a year for it.”