8 Consumer Items More Costly in 2013

According to experts, more than just taxes are going to get expensive this year. Expect to see price hikes on things in your every day life, like smartphones, health insurance, college tuition, and copper items.

Meg Handley, reporter for U.S. News & World Report is forecasting these eight items to rise in cost.

1. Health Insurance
This may not be entirely a shock, since medical insurance premiums seem to rise a little every year. But, the average hike is more this year (around 6 percent) and the cost increases will be passed along to employees. Expect to see around $267 of your paycheck going annually to health benefits.

2. College Tuition
There’s no slowdown in the rise of higher education costs. States that once were able to subsidize students’ tuition costs can no long afford the cuts. Expect to see the in-state tuition for 2013 rise to nearly 5 percent, plus 4 percent more in fees, according to the College Board Advocacy & Policy Center.

3. New Cars
The downside to having more fuel-efficient cars is that their costlier to make. The more the car costs to buy, the less affordable it will be to the consumer. To give you some examples, a Toyota Camry will go up $175 this year. Doesn’t seem that bad? Consider the price increase in a 2013 Lexus CT 200h which will be almost $3,000 more expensive than last year’s model.

4. Groceries
Thanks to the summer dry spell of 2012, food prices like beef, poultry, milk, cereal, and bakery items will increase by as much as 4 percent, according to the United States Department of Agriculture says. That’s an extra $40 a month for most families.

5. High-End Electronics
Kicking yourself for showing such buying restraint during the holidays? You may wish you had splurged on a new laptop, tablet computer, or Apple notebook instead. The Consumer Electronics Association says Ultra HD TVs will sell for as much as $25,000, and advances in audio technology will drive up equipment prices as well.

6. Copper
Pretty much anything made from copper (water pipes, beer, candy, pots, kettles) could rise in price due to a scarcity in metal that could result from a new fund to trade copper approved by the Securities Exchange Commission.

7. Smartphones
Remember when every 2-3 years yielded a brand new phone for free? No longer. Dealnews.com reports T-Mobile will start charging full price for their phones this year, something they felt pushed to do because they offer such cheap consumer plans when compared to the competition.

8. Shipping
Did you face sticker shock when mailing your holiday packages last month? Don’t hold your breath for 2013, it’s going to get worse. Both UPS and FedEx plan to raise their prices by almost 5 percent. Expect online manufacturer’s who normally offer free shipping on a certain minimums to raise their threshold amounts.