The COVID-19 pandemic impacted every area of our lives, from personal health to the global economy. The appliance industry was no exception. While pandemic-related restrictions are being lifted across the country this summer, COVID-related shortages in products and parts have put upward pressure on prices of just about every product and service we consume every day.
After decades of stability in appliance pricing and availability, consumers should expect shortages and higher prices for their household appliance needs. Smart consumers may be able to “beat” the price increases by making their purchases before announced price increases take effect.
Nearly every appliance manufacturer has announced price increases over the course of the next few months. Some went into effect in May, while others will take effect in June, July, and later in 2021. Art Handler’s Appliance Center in Pleasantville, NJ, has a staff of expert advisors who can help shoppers identify the brands that have not yet implemented the price increases and help these customer lock in their savings now. The appliance center’s advisors can also guide shoppers through the process of selecting brands and products that are available now versus those that are on backorder for weeks or even months.
Many Art Handler’s customers have inquired about why the supply of appliances is constrained, and how it affects the prices of the products they need. The appliance center’s advisors remind customers that COVID-19 started in China, where many appliance parts are manufactured. By March, the virus spread across the globe to the United States and the Midwest, and South in particular, where most appliances are manufactured. Next was Mexico, the world’s next biggest parts supplier, followed by California and the primary shipping hub for appliances, the Port of Los Angeles.
Add in shortages of specific materials used in appliances from washers and dryers, refrigerators, ranges and grills, like stainless steel, and one can see why certain items can take far longer to deliver than before the pandemic. Many consumers forget that with so many of our appliances being “smart” refrigerators, microwaves and washers, these items are also affected by a shortage in computer chips. Adding insult to injury, the foam insulation in most refrigerators is produced by a single company based in Dallas, TX. Due to a rare Texas snowstorm in March, production of foam insulation came to a halt for several weeks.
The result? Refrigerator shoppers may have to wait for delivery of the products they have their hearts set on, or buy similar products that might not be as feature-rich, but are available now.
Making matters worse, just as supply dipped last year, demand skyrocketed. Many Art Handlers customers found themselves stuck at home and using appliances more. Many used the money saved by forgoing vacations to upgrade their homes. Any time we have lots of demand and limited supply to meet it, prices are bound to increase.
The bottom line for consumers of appliances; Now is the time the buy if you want to avoid further price increases. Nobody in the appliance industry has a crystal ball, but it is very likely that prices will continue to increase for the foreseeable future.
Luckily, Art Handler’s Appliance Center offers 50 percent off New Jersey Sales Tax every day. Even with the increases, shoppers will still find savings at the southern New Jersey appliance retailer’s massive showroom.
Art Handler’s Appliance Center at 10 East Black Horse Pike in Pleasantville, NJ, has expert in-store advisors who can help you to navigate supply issues, find alternative brands if your first choice is backlogged, and can give you the straight talk about when you can realistically expect your new appliance to be delivered.
Visit us online at https://www.handlersappliance.com or call 609-641-1044.
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