Happy New Year! Your life just got more expensive.
While congress frets over the looming fiscal cliff and taxpayers brace themselves for higher tax rates, consumers should prepare for certain goods to become pricier in 2013.
Groceries, fuel-efficient cars, and health care are all expected to get a little more costly next year, according to Dealnews.
But, there might be an alternative for some purchases.
“The easiest way to dodge some of these rising costs is to buy used,” Dan de Grandpre, CEO of Dealnews.com, told ABC News.
“A used car may not get as good mileage as a new one, but you’ll never save enough money at the pump to offset the money you’ll save buying used. Consider a used or refurbished iPhone 4 or 4S for the same reasons,” said Grandpre. “Not only will you dodge the full price of a newer iPhone, but you’ll be able to use older cables and speaker docks that are hitting their best prices in history as manufacturers move to Apple’s newer Lightning connector.”
Here’s a look at a few of the items compiled by DealNews that will increase at the beginning of the year:
Fuel Efficiency Ratchets Up the Cost of Cars
The price of engines is expected to drive up the cost of fuel-efficient vehicles, according to Dealnews. Consumers can expect to see an increase in prices for the Toyota Camry and Lexus CT. The Camry is expected to receive a $175 price hike and, compared to the previous year, buyers can expect to pay $3,000 more for 2013 Lexus CT 200h.
Grocery Prices to Increase by as Much as 4 Percent
Last summer’s drought is expected to effect the price tag of meat, poultry and dairy. Cereal and bakery products will cost more next year as a result of the drought. According to Dealnews, food prices are expected to rise 3.5 percent to 4 percent in 2013.
Health Care Premiums on the Rise
Employers are expected to pass along the cost of higher premiums in the New Year. Health care premiums are expected to rise to 6.3 percent in 2013, up from 5.7 percent, according to Aon Hewitt, a human resource consulting firm. According to Aon Hewitt, Philadelphia area residents will shell out close to $13,000 on average in health care costs.
High-End TVs and Home Theater Systems
According to Dealnews, Ultra HD TVs with their high pixel density –already sell for $20,000 to $25,000 and that may go up. High-end audio manufacturers will raise prices too, “as they incorporate premium features like Apple Airplay or standard DLNA that lets users control the entire system wirelessly. These features can drive up the cost of AV equipment in an instant.”
Computers Push High-End Features
The increasing popularity of tablet computers is bad news for the personal computer industry and likely means PCs will go up in price. “As tablets continue to gain momentum in the consumer electronics realm, computers are returning to their original function as work-related machines — albeit more powerful and expensive,” writes Laura Heller.
Copper Will Be in Demand and Beer Prices Will Suffer
The metal used in water pipes, pots, kettles and equipment for making beer could see price spikes after the SEC approved a fund to trade the metal. As a result, consumers may see the price of beer, candy and other liquors increase in the new year.
Say Goodbye to Subsidies for Smartphones
T-Mobile has already announced its decision to bid adieu to its smartphone subsidies. Instead, the mobile company will charge customers an upfront fee and bill them in monthly installments for the remaining balance in 2013. But it’s often cheaper to pay for the phone than get hit with much higher monthly rates at carriers that bundle in the price of the phone.
Tuition Goes Up as States Cut College Subsidies
Each year, tuition rises well ahead of inflation, which has been running at less than 3 percent. In 2013, in-state tuition at public colleges will rise to 4.8 percent, according to the College Board Advocacy & Policy Center.