Tariffs leading to price rises

Lucille

I am not discussing the actual politics of possible rises in prices due to tariffs in the escalating trade war with China.

Instead there is plenty to be discussed about the price rises themselves. One funny one is a discussion I saw among a group of bicyclists about whether they should go ahead and treat themselves to a new bike because they anticipated price hikes due to tariffs. It is funny because some bicyclists will try to talk themselves and others into new bikes using any excuse they can think of. And some bikes now cost thousands (not mine).

I myself am not planning to change my current buying habits by buying up anything prior to an anticipated price rise. I have items I have canned and stored foods so already have as much as I want to store done.

If certain items skyrocket in price I will simply make do with others or do without. What about you?

SaveComment27Like
Comments (27)
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
LoneJack Zn 6a, KC

We typically buy so little other than groceries and gas that it probably won't affect us much. It may delay any non-essential purchases of consumer goods but we've already been doing that while paying my son's college tuition out of pocket. When he is done with college we plan to spend that money on some home improvements and updating.

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Winter

It's the tariffs on raw materials that concerns me. Steel...aluminum, etc. Do you remember the copper shortage of the 70's? In many instances that resulted in the substitution of aluminum for copper...in electric wiring, plumbing materials, etc. It was a dangerous substitution and wreaked havoc with the construction industry as well as causing serious threats to home owners and businesses who were forced to accept something less than copper materials. Eventually it resulted in banning the use of aluminum for wiring. One of the first things I always checked when looking to buy older property was whether the wiring was up to Code....copper and not aluminum.

I, too, can withstand higher prices of produce, etc but when I'm forced to replace old warn out household fixtures...as I was recently...my concern will escalate. I'm already seeing plastic parts where steel once ruled. Fortunately, it's not a part that will affect the immediate performance of the fixture but if it cracked or broke...it would necessitate replacement of the entire fixture because it would expose other parts of the fixture that could cause problems.

IMO...nobody wins in a battle of tariffs despite the political window dressing that's used to make it an acceptable option to John Q Public.



3 Likes Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
DawnInCal

We've just painted the inside of our house, replaced the carpets in the bedrooms and replaced some of the light fixtures throughout. The accommodations for our August vacation were paid for months ago so no worries there. I'm glad we took care of those big expenses now rather than wait. We are planning to build a new garage and put hardwood flooring in at our other house, but that's down the road a ways so not going to worry about that now. I think the biggest increases we will see in our household expenses is for food, but we'll just have to suck it up and deal. We gotta eat and I have no interest in growing my own food, although I did buy some strawberry plants the other day but that's more for fun than any other reason.



Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Elmer J Fudd

As I recall, the very basic effect that tariff and other tax increases imposed on producers and sellers always get passed along to the ultimate product customers was part of my Economics 1 curriculum. This is maybe an analog to what electrician apprentices learn, don't stand in water and hold live wires. The outcomes are similarly very predictable. But such basic insights are beyond the knowledge and abilities of those temporarily in charge.

No politics involved. I'm much happier since I've decided to ignore news reports about the administration and the federal political scene. I'll break radio silence again as the elections approach next year and then depending on the results, I'll either dive underwater again for several years or find it safe to stay on the surface.

5 Likes Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
maifleur01

Beyond what most people see in their day to day expenses will be the increases in things most people do not think of. Utilities must continually replace and upgrade their systems. Almost every business and person has things break. Since parts for many things are not possible to find the broken must be replaced. Businesses can pass the cost on to the consumer or reduce salaries or personnel. If anyone thinks they can escape tariffs by simply using what they have they are ignoring the factors in their daily lives that are beyond their control but are indirectly related to the tariffs of all kinds.

5 Likes Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Lars

I have a Cannondale Jekyll Mountain bike, and when I bought it, the literature said it was made in Pennsylvania. It has good front and rear suspension and it did costs thousands. I will not need to be replacing it any time soon. It does say "Made in USA" on the bike frame. I rode it a lot when I lived in Venice where there are nice bike trails, although they get crowded during beach season. I looked at other bikes that were imported (from China), and they were not nearly as good. The bike is so efficient that I do not get as much of a workout when riding it as I would from a cheaper bike, but I can go further.

I have some concern about the price of food increasing, but I already often shop at local farmers' markets where the prices are already higher than in the stores.

I don't approve of tariffs in general, but I do think that China needs to be put under control and made to stop the theft of intellectual property. I've seen Chinese spies here taking photos of toys (especially at the Disney store) and wondered why they didn't just buy the toy that they want to counterfeit. China is not playing fair and needs to follow international rules. The one advantage to having things manufactured in China (for us) is that China gets polluted instead of the U.S. The only place in Asia I might consider visiting is Thailand, and perhaps Vietnam. My niece recently went to Vietnam to take a job teaching ESL. She's done this in Korea as well. I think I would like to visit Japan, but Kevin does not want to go. We do have Little Tokyo here plus Sawtelle Japantown (which used to be called Little Osaka), and these give me a small sense of being in Japan without having to go there. We go to Sawtelle frequently (as it is close, and that's where our favorite Japanese markets are), but next year we will be getting a Metro station walking distance from our house, which will make it very easy to go downtown.

We are going to Palm Springs the first week-end in June to look at real estate, now that we have our money from selling the farm in Texas, and we will need to buy some furniture for our second house. We already have some extra furniture in storage (dining table and chairs), but the main thing we will need to buy will be beds. We already have an extra sofa in our sewing room here, and I will be glad to get that moved out, along with a lot of other extra stuff that we have here. There are some good used furniture stores in Palm Springs that sell MCM antiques, but they are not cheap. I've also bought unfinished furniture and we finished it ourselves, to save money, and that furniture was made locally.

4 Likes Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Lucille

If anyone thinks they can escape tariffs

Well, certainly some of the bike riders (not Lars) are having all kinds of fun planning to buy bikes now rather than later. But a certain % love any excuse for a new bike.

1 Like Save    
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nicole___

Like you Lucille, I'd make do or pay double for items that are already under priced. Food is cheap here. I could see electronics going up in price. Clothing is cheap if purchased in a thrift store, short term. Long term....cars could become unaffordable. Public transportation may become more popular....or riding bikes. Which is better for our air quality. I may want to buy that snow blower...sooner....than later.

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Kool Beans

I haven’t thought about how they will affect us in the immediate future, what I wonder about is if the price hikes will be permanent or if once this is over, will they retract to more affordable levels? I assume they won’t drop as low as they are now, but will we see some decline?

Due to clearance sales Nicole, I would think that the timing would be better as well now, wouldn’t it?

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Elmer J Fudd

What you can expect is that prices go up when tariffs are announced (before they're imposed) and will go down when rescinded.

Unencumbered, tariff-free trade is such a consistent feature of the modern world for movement of goods and services between almost all countries that you can expect these particular tariffs to be removed when the administration changes. If I remember enough back to Econ 1, the consensus opinion was that the only legitimate use of tariffs was to counter unfair pricing tactics - aka dumping.

Protectionism via tariffs flew out the window in most places before the middle of the 20th century. Though we still have that here in some forms, a good example of which is the tariff on imported sugar to artificially maintain high sugar prices for the benefit of domestic sugar growers and the detriment of consumers. The US as a result has the highest sugar prices in the world, which is why so many products here (and not elsewhere) are made with high fructose corn syrup - it's cheaper.

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
blfenton

@Lars - The frame of your bike may have been made in the US but what about the rest of the bike? Is the aluminum for the frame made in the US or was it imported. Do you in fact, know where the rest of it was made - the pedals, the brake and gear levers, the rims, the derailleurs, the chain, etc, etc, etc,

Perhaps you do know where everything else was made, but the question still stands with respect to anything that says Made in the US.

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nicole___

Kool.....DH went to Denver yesterday. Stopped @ an ACE store. Asked the salesman if they still had that one Toro 928 snow blower he said he didn't know. That next Winter they would get them out of the warehouse, he/my husband could come back THEN.

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
maifleur01

Nicole shows currently unavailable on line. Start watching the end of July online and have them ship one if you have not found one since then. However there are several 928's so he should look at all of the models as apparently there are problems with some of them. Which might be why few places in this area sell Toro's.

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nicole___

Maifleur.....Toros have no shear pins. DH has decided he "has to" own a Toro 2 stage 28". I liked a Husquavarna that was on sale, end-of-the-season....and several others. He's having none of it! :0) What's popular in your area?

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
maifleur01

Husquavarna and Murrays are what you see for sale but very few actually purchase unless they are using them to earn some extra money. This is the first year in several that we have had more than 3-4 inches at a time. Your husband needs to find someone that does snow removal to find out what they have the least amount of problems before purchase. Some lawn services switch from snow to lawn then back so if he can find an employee/owner that does both they may be able to advise him. The alternate is to go to a repair shop that does not sell only repairs and ask about which ones have problems and what kind of problems. He may be more convinced if he goes to a couple of repair places and does a comparison. Will also keep him occupied for a while.

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chisue

Re: Seasonal sales. We couldn't find a replacement window air conditioner at ACE, Sears, Home Depot or Costco one winter because...hey, it's *winter*. (Home office knows best?) We were on Maui.

Food prices have already risen. The US has had some of the lowest food costs in the first world for a long time, thanks to cheap immigrant labor. Well, *that's* over, thankyouverymuch, and Americans are 'too good' for such jobs. Robots may be developed, but that's not helping us now.

Wasn't there a huge uprising in some colony a long time ago when tariffs were raised on tea?

4 Likes Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Elmer J Fudd

I think food in the US is still quite cheap by historical standards.

There is a labor problem which, without more proactive attention on a federal level, will result in more food production being shifted outside the US (as has happened with manufacturing). Consumers are unwilling to pay more to allow higher wages be paid.

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Kool Beans

Nicole, I don’t know if this will be of help, but I just looked them up at Home Depot & Ace, same price and Home Depot offers free ship to store. This search is for a Home Depot in your state.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Toro-Power-Max-HD-928-OAE-28-in-265-cc-2-Stage-Electric-Start-Gas-Snow-Blower-38840/306237977

We have a Toro but it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles this one has. The automatic I have to run to keep up with the self propel, I’m too short to turn the shoot and I got stuck trying to turn it, (Yes, it was pretty laughable watching me clear 10 inches!).

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Michael

Nicole, you don't need to shop the stores for that Toro. You can order the snow blower at the Toro online store. They'll ship it to your local dealer, have it assembled and delivered to your house, free of charge.

The Torodealer.com Promise:
While these machines are powerful snowblowing monsters, they require
set-up and tuning. We won’t just ship a Toro two stage to you and dump
it in your driveway. When you order a Toro two stage it will be set up
and inspected by your Toro dealer. This dealer will deliver the product
to you, ready to use. They will review important safety and
operational information with you and answer any questions you have.
They won’t leave until you are satisfied and ready to blow snow -
another benefit of buying from a Toro dealer that you won’t get on
another site!

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nicole___

We "did" check with ALL the neighbors and commercials places that do snow removal. These nuts....buy tractors with snow blower attachments & mower attachment.....about $20K! The neighbors think they're "fun".

Thanks for ALL the help and suggestions. ACE, in the past, has had 25% off coupons for "anything", any amount. I was hoping for one of those. Right now $10 off/$40 purchase. I have a PRO account w/ HD. I need to check my discount there. I saved 30% on my lumber order.

The house we purchased was unfinished. Just ordered tongue n' groove cedar. Cedar wood is imported....right? Canada.



Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ritaweeda

Since practically everything in a Walmart is from China (that's why it's all cheap) and most poor people shop there exclusively - I think it will be the poor that will suffer the most. I'm not saying ONLY poor people shop there and I don't have a problem with Walmart, I'm just saying what I see.

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Kool Beans

You should check, between the discount you can get and the difference in cost between this year and next, it might be worth it.

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Michael

rita, have you checked the Made In labels at other stores like Target, Kohl's, JCP, etc? I'm sure their merchandise is predominantly labeled Made in China, or India, Malaysia, etc.

1 Like Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ritaweeda

Oh, I'm sure it's the same in all those stores. But the really financially strapped will usually go to Walmart or a dollar store because it's cheaper and they have a large variety of goods. They aren't going to go into the high-end stores that might possibly be selling U.S. or similar products. (Is there even such a thing anymore??) Hey, I'm not destitute but I shop at Walmart for a lot of things, too. I can buy most staple groceries there for so much cheaper than the higher-end store I shop for particulars at, exact same brand. It's just that the ones making these decisions aren't the ones who have to shop where there's nothing but cheap Chinese products. I just hope that these decisions will come to a good end - I don't want to get too political here, that's what Hot Topics are for, we have been catching it in the shorts for too many years now with uneven trade practices but it has made imported goods cheaper and therefore more readily available for the lower-economic class.

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Alisande

I'd been planning to get a small window air conditioner after my new roof is finished. I knew the model I wanted, and when I learned it's made in China I decided to go ahead and buy it now. It's not an expensive unit, so I don't know how much--if anything--I saved. But now I can stop thinking about it, and concentrate on worrying about the cost of the roof. :-)

Save     Thanked by Lucille
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Lucille

It is funny because some bicyclists will try to talk themselves and others into new bikes using any excuse they can think of.

Rolls eyes. At self, no small feat.

I found a nice used Electra cruiser bike on Ebay and bought it this morning. I guess I'm all set for the trade wars, lol.

1 Like Save    
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nicole___

Kool....2 years ago, the model we want, had fewer bells n' whistles...and was $300 less. Prices do increase....we need to make a move. The wood order, 162 pieces of cedar arrived today. I need to focus on this project & drop it for now.

Save    
Browse Gardening and Landscaping Stories on Houzz See all Stories
For Pros How Contractors Are Handling Rising Product and Materials Costs
Pros in custom building, remodeling and design-build share their strategies for maintaining profits as costs go up
Full Story
Modern Homes Houzz Tour: A Saarinen-Inspired Home Rises in Cincinnati
A couple’s visit to the modern architect’s Miller House in Indiana gives them ideas for their new clean-lined home
Full Story
Rustic Style A Storybook Potting Shed Rises From a Dirt Lot
Breathtaking views and specialty materials create a memorable structure on a working avocado farm
Full Story
We are a high-end design/build firm comprised of Landscape Architects, skilled craftsmen, & experienced landscape... Read More