Businesses and homeowners in Hampton Roads have been impacted by inflation. A local economist weigh in

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Posted at 5:23 PM, Feb 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-08 17:48:41-05

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - Have you tried to buy a new appliance for your home recently or tried to get one repaired? Just like everything else, it seems inflation is driving up the cost of home appliances.

Jazmyn Wimbush, a longtime homeowner, said the rising cost of appliances has led her to budget wisely.

"It's been a struggle at this point. All I can do is say, 'Everybody be patient,'" said Wimbush, a homeowner and property manager.

Inside Cashwell Appliance Parts, manager Brady Conley has also seen the impact of inflation.

"Every day is a challenge - that's the only way I can say it. Every day is different," said Conley.

That’s prompted Conley to take each day at a time. He said everything in his store has increased in price since last year, which means people looking for parts can expect a double- digit increase.

"Pretty much everything is taking a hit upward; very little has gone downward. I've seen a few things but not very much at all, so it's just the trend, and I don't expect to change anytime soon," said Conley.

Appliances like HVAC systems, electrical components and water heaters are all being impacted by cost inflation, and the rising cost of raw metals and shipping delays are another factor.

"Some of the stuff that's very common that we don't stock, we don't have anymore," said Conley.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of December 2021, appliance prices were up 13% and HVAC systems prices were up 14%.

"I'm looking for ways to try and cut and get in what I can get, but even then, the delay in getting certain appliances - there's no workaround it," said Wimbush.

Wimbush said she feels double the impact. With her being a homeowner and property manager, she said its been difficult trying to get parts.

"I have done some home repairs on my own property, and yeah... there's certain things that I went in and was like, 'Since when did this get to be so high?'" said Wimbush.

Dr. Bob McNab, an economist at Old Dominion University, has been keeping track of inflation impacts.

"We've seen supply chains be disrupted, not only because of COVID, but log jams at ports. We've had troubles moving goods from where they're manufactured to, where they're sold, so when you put the two together, you have people wanting to buy more things and it's not enough things, so prices increase," said McNab.

McNab tells News 3 people can start to see some relief in the second half of the year, but interest rates will rise on things like credit cards, mortgages and other loans.

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