Consumer Alert: Here's how tariffs could affect your wallet

It depends on how much you spend, but most analysts say the average family will spend at least an extra $400 a year.

News 12 Staff

May 17, 2019, 5:38 PM

Updated 1,833 days ago

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Need new appliances? They could cost you more.
Thanks to tariffs on Chinese imports, the average cost of a washing machine has gone from $749 to nearly $840. And if 25% tariffs kick in, analysts say the price could top $900.
"All appliance retailers, no matter who they are, are going to be raising their prices," says appliance store owner Mark Tilbor. In the end, he says, consumers always wind up footing the bill.
"You notice it more on the low end. We used to be selling washers for like $399. Those days really are gone. Most washers are $500, $600 and above," Tilbor says.
If you think you can save money by buying American -- not really. Many of the components, including the sheet metal itself, are still imported from China.
"American consumers are already paying, they just don't really know it," says Mark Zandi, chief economist with Moody's Analytics. "It's kind of a stealth tax. But it's going to become a very obvious tax not too far from now, if this continues."
One place you're likely to notice: electronics. Many components come from Chinese factories.
Analysts say if Apple wanted to offset 25% tariffs, it would have to raise iPhone prices 12%, so that an iPhone 8 that now costs $599 would cost $685.
Chinese-made shoes could also wind up costing more. A trade group says a pair that used to run $50 will wind up costing $66.
Home renovations could also get more expensive because of higher prices on construction materials. Housing prices themselves are less likely to be affected, as they have more to do with things like interest rates.
So how much will tariffs impact you? That depends on how much you spend, but most analysts say the average family will spend at least an extra $400 a year.
US tariffs are also impacting China -- and the White House is counting on Beijing to cave first.


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