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I was going though my inventory of Evergreen styrene strips and was taken back a bit when I saw some of the price tags. They go like this per package over time:

$1.99 (haven't a clue how long ago)
$2.19
$2.59
$2.99
$3.79 (what I paid a few weeks ago)

Many years ago I went into a building supply store and picked up a box of nails that had probably six or eight price tags on top of each other. I can't remember now what those prices were, but I do remember peeling them up to see. It's insane how prices can jump over the smallest of things. Just look at gas prices right now. Icon_rolleyes
My estimated home value has doubled in 3 years. Same house, just 3 more years wear and tear. People keep trying to tell me this is a good thing and a sign of a great economy. Means nothing if the new house I want to buy has also doubled in value in 3 years.
(02-20-2021, 09:48 AM)ezdays Wrote: [ -> ] ...It's insane how prices can jump over the smallest of things....

You're not kidding:  I went to the only hobbyshop left in this area (about a 45 minute drive), to pick-up some longer static grass.  While I was there, I decided that I might as well pick up a sheet of Evergreen passenger car siding, as I'm about to embark on building some head-end passenger equipment (17 cars) to finally finish that portion of my rolling stock. 

This particular store is well-stocked, but there are no price tags on anything, so check-out can be "interesting".  The static grass, a small packet, which I expected to be expensive, was a bit over $8.00, a little less than my estimate, but one sheet of scribed styrene (they used to come as two sheets per pack, for around $4.00) was over $10.00.

A couple of days ago, I ordered some detail parts for those cars, from Precision Scale...over  $100.00 for brake gear and clerestory vents.

I will probably need another 3 or 4 sheets to fulfill my plans.  While I usually enjoy projects like this, it's starting to become onerous, and I'm looking forward to just working on my layout, using-up what I have on-hand.  It's not like I really "need" any more stuff...if I did, chances are that I'd simply opt out.

Wayne
Wayne, those detail parts add up, don't they! Someday I willjust buy a small resin 3d printer and make my own.
Yup, styrene sheets:
 
2 sheets of Evergreen .015 clear, $2.49 at Hobbytown, a long, long gone hobby shop
3 sheets of Plastruct .060 white, $5.45 also at Hobbytown
1 sheet of Evergreen .040 white tile, $6.95 (a few weeks ago)

You're right Kevin, everything has gone up, some a lot more than others. If I bought those sheets for $2.49 in 2003, they should be around $3.50 for two sheets now based on known inflation rates, not $6.95 for one sheet. Good thought about getting a 3D printer, it should pay for itself in no time.... Plus a lot more fun using it to do what you need...

Real estate is a different thing, that usually doesn't track inflation, more like availability, sometime panic-driven and frequently, speculation. I see houses here going for more than listing price. You never saw bidding wars in the Phoenix area before. Other places, yeah, but not here until now.
I've tried to caution my wife that we may qualify for loan, but may not find anything we can afford due to bidding wars. I dont want the stress. Hobby prices seem to have exploded recently. Some of it I think is because people are charging more because buyers are willing to pay it.
just got a email from tichy and there raising there prices due to material and labor increases .
Jim
(02-20-2021, 01:26 PM)ezdays Wrote: [ -> ]...Real estate is a different thing, that usually doesn't track inflation, more like availability, sometime panic-driven and frequently, speculation. I see houses here going for more than listing price. You never saw bidding wars in the Phoenix area before. Other places, yeah, but not here until now.

Recently, there was a house not too far from here, a single-storey bungalow, not large at all, bought by a couple as an investment for somewhere around $200,000 plus (the first home we owned was not quite twice as big, but cost only $43,000, but, of course, that was quite a few years ago).

They put it on the market a couple of years later, for roughly $440,000, and got 120 showings in one week, with potential buyers attempting to out-bid others. The selling price  was somewhere around $860,000.

Based on the prices in this area, I wouldn't be surprised to sell our current home for in excess of two million, but I'd have to remove the layout, I think, as in most cases, they're considered to be a liability by most realtors.

Even at that price, it would be difficult for me to move, having built the house myself.

Wayne
Think about this, as prices go up due to bidding wars, builders get to increase their prices for new homes, landowners get to charge more when they sell to a developer, and everyone down the line wants a piece of the pie making real estate increases much higher than the inflation rate. There's one thing that hasn't kept up with inflation though. Any of you that are retired will know what I'm talking about. Inflation can go up 5%, but us that depend on Social Security may see anywhere from 0 to 2%, and usually, most of that goes for increases in our medicare payments.

I think hobby manufacturers and importers should know that a good deal of their customer base are retired folk, many dependent of Social Security to get by and when they raise prices, they are driving away many customers that can no longer afford to stay in the hobby. I remember when I started, I paid less than $20 for a number of my engines and a few dollars each for cars. See what they're going for now and then there's no need to ask why I'm not interested in upgrading or buying any new rolling stock. It isn't just the Internet that's causing hobby shops to close.
Real estate is not moving all that much here so the prices which skyrocketed in the early 2000's then dropped with the crash around 2006 never really recovered that much and that makes me very happy because I don't plan on moving and the higher prices meant higher property taxes. After the crash they were slow to lower the taxes back down but a bunch of people reminded them that in a county with only 12,000 year round residents we know who you are and where you live! Big Grin The following year the taxes were lowered and nobody died and they were re-elected! Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin
(02-21-2021, 06:59 AM)Tyson Rayles Wrote: [ -> ]Real estate is not moving all that much here so the prices which skyrocketed in the early 2000's then dropped with the crash around 2006 never really recovered that much and that makes me very happy because I don't plan on moving and the higher prices meant higher property taxes. After the crash they were slow to lower the taxes back down but a bunch of people reminded them that in a county with only 12,000 year round residents we know who you are and where you live! Big Grin The following year the taxes were lowered and nobody died and they were re-elected! Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin

If you said that here, you'd wind up in jail for harassment Icon_e_surprised . One thing they do in Arizona is if you're 65 or over, don't make over a certain amount, own your home and have lived in it for at least two years, you can apply to have your house assessment value frozen. If you read the fine print on the application, that doesn't mean your taxes won't go up, just that your house value for assessment purposes won't increase for any reason. Things aren't equal when it comes to property taxes anyway. A house worth $500,000 may be taxed $1200, but one down the street worth $300.00 may be taxed twice that. That's where Zillow comes in handy finding these things out but unable to do anything about it.

BTW, notice that as home prices increase, so does rentals forcing some people to get into those bidding wars or risk living on the streets. 

And Wayne, that's good to know about a train layout being a detriment to selling a house. Mine is portable and small enough to move if I need be, but I'm just a bit tired of that. Since 1998, we've moved seven times, no wonder I'm tired.
(02-20-2021, 09:48 AM)ezdays Wrote: [ -> ]I was going though my inventory of Evergreen styrene strips and was taken back a bit when I saw some of the price tags. They go like this per package over time:

$1.99 (haven't a clue how long ago)
$2.19
$2.59
$2.99
$3.79 (what I paid a few weeks ago)

Many years ago I went into a building supply store and picked up a box of nails that had probably six or eight price tags on top of each other. I can't remember now what those prices were, but I do remember peeling them up to see. It's insane how prices can jump over the smallest of things. Just look at gas prices right now. Icon_rolleyes

Welcome to the New World!  Just about the only thing in my life that has not drastically increased with inflation is my retirement income.  Primarily why I went into N scale. Icon_rolleyes
I think the problem for plastic manufacturing is oil. Plastic is made from oil. When that Evergreen ship stopped traffic in the Suez Canal, oil tankers were stuck waiting for it to clear. Prices suddenly sky rocketed. Every time a refinery has a problem, oil prices go up. When they had a glut of oil a couple of months ago, oil stocks crashed, and prices at the pump dropped, but somewhere along the line prices remained high for stuff made of plastic. About the only place where product prices follow the price of oil is at gas pumps and perhaps lube oil. Every time something that is made out of oil has a price rise, they blame the cost of oil, but when oil prices drop, the price of plastic products does not follow!
(04-16-2021, 10:01 AM)Russ Bellinis Wrote: [ -> ]I think the problem for plastic manufacturing is oil.  Plastic is made from oil.  When that Evergreen ship stopped traffic in the Suez Canal, oil tankers were stuck waiting for it to clear.  Prices suddenly sky rocketed.  Every time a refinery has a problem, oil prices go up.  When they had a glut of oil a couple of months ago, oil stocks crashed, and prices at the pump dropped, but somewhere along the line prices remained high for stuff made of plastic.  About the only place where product prices follow the price of oil is at gas pumps and perhaps lube oil.  Every time something that is made out of oil has a price rise, they blame the cost of oil, but when oil prices drop, the price of plastic products does not follow!

Think also about a cup of coffee. Just about for any reason that comes along, the price of a cup of coffee goes up. When that issue goes away, the price of coffee stays up, just like things made of plastic. Why, two reasons I think, they do it because folks are used to paying the higher prices and secondly, they do it because they can. The same goes for soda at sit-down restaurants. I went to my handy-dandy inflation calculator and asked how much should a nickle cup of coffee (or a glass of soda) in 1940 cost today, it said, 95 cents. I just paid $2.89 for one cup of coffee at Denny's the other day, the same price for tea or soda.
(02-20-2021, 05:55 PM)ezdays Wrote: [ -> ]Think about this, as prices go up due to bidding wars, builders get to increase their prices for new homes, landowners get to charge more when they sell to a developer, and everyone down the line wants a piece of the pie making real estate increases much higher than the inflation rate. There's one thing that hasn't kept up with inflation though. Any of you that are retired will know what I'm talking about. Inflation can go up 5%, but us that depend on Social Security may see anywhere from 0 to 2%, and usually, most of that goes for increases in our medicare payments.

I think hobby manufacturers and importers should know that a good deal of their customer base are retired folk, many dependent of Social Security to get by and when they raise prices, they are driving away many customers that can no longer afford to stay in the hobby. I remember when I started, I paid less than $20 for a number of my engines and a few dollars each for cars. See what they're going for now and then there's no need to ask why I'm not interested in upgrading or buying any new rolling stock. It isn't just the Internet that's causing hobby shops to close.

Exactly.  That's a major reason why I just laugh when someone tells me that I can "upgrade" to DCC.  I tell them "Sure...when you pay for it."

A hobby should be fun, not another stress factor over costs and bills.