Florida Ranked as the Fifth-Most Expensive State for Car Ownership as Repair Costs and Wait Times Surge

The impact of the UAW strike is expected to reach South Florida, causing a ripple effect that will raise prices from consumers to auto body and repair shops. According to financial website GOBankingRates.com, Florida is already ranked as the fifth most expensive state to own a car, taking into account factors such as insurance, gas, and general upkeep. This news has left many residents frustrated and concerned about the rising costs.

One resident, David Lurry of Port St. Lucie, expressed his disbelief, stating, “It’s just ridiculous. One word.” Another resident, Kerry Neufeld, shared his personal experience, saying, “One car, my van is $400 a month, my truck is $600 a month, insurance is about $375 for both of them. Then gas, the truck’s $100.” It is clear that the burden of these increased costs is being felt by the residents of South Florida.

Unfortunately, the impact of the strike doesn’t stop at higher insurance and gas prices. Car owners who have vehicles from Ford, General Motors, Chrysler, or Jeep may also face spikes in the cost of repairs. Andrew Brown, the owner of Four Points Auto in Port St. Lucie, has already seen prices go up. He explained, “Prices are going up, we see that in our prices with all different vendors. I see a little more every day.” Brown also expressed concern about a potential shortage of parts due to the lack of workers, which will further drive up costs.

The situation puts Brown in a difficult position, as he must decide whether to pass on the increased costs to his customers or absorb them himself. Either way, it’s a lose-lose situation for him. “It’s very hard to tell you what to do at that point,” Brown said. “It’s tough, it’s tough.” The struggle faced by business owners like Brown highlights the challenges brought forth by the UAW strike.

Despite the rising costs, some residents, like Linda Doser, still appreciate living in Florida. Doser stated, “Yeah, it really makes a difference. Florida’s still a great place to live, I wouldn’t live anywhere else.” However, it’s clear that something needs to be done to address the increasing prices and the potential difficulties faced by car owners and repair shops.

Fortunately, the American Automobile Association (AAA) offers some tips to help mitigate costs for those planning to buy a car. These tips include knowing all the expenses associated with car ownership, starting the process early due to limited inventory, obtaining pre-approval from a financial institution, creating a budget that factors in all elements of ownership, and negotiating each aspect of the purchase separately.

For example, when negotiating the purchase cost, it is advised to check multiple websites to understand the vehicle’s selling price in the area. Driving outside of the immediate location and expanding the search area can potentially result in savings. Additionally, obtaining pre-approval for an auto loan and having a higher credit score can lead to lower interest rates on finance rates. When evaluating a trade-in, considering the vehicle’s condition and checking various websites for average trade-in values can help maximize the value received.

While the UAW strike continues to impact South Florida, there are steps that consumers can take to navigate the rising costs associated with car ownership. By being informed and proactive, individuals can make more informed decisions and potentially save money in the process.

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