Price of hurricane shutters expected to rise, thanks to tariff on aluminum


If you’re looking to buy hurricane shutters for the next storm, it will cost you more.

Local business owners say now that President Donald Trump announced the 10 percent tariff on aluminum, prices for hurricane shutters will go up.

The change can be expected as soon as tomorrow.

Trump says that the tariffs on both aluminum and steel won’t affect our economy, but that doesn’t seem to be the case in South Florida.

“I never really thought in the past that tariffs would affect us, but obviously it is now, “ says Steve Mears, owner of Lifetime Exteriors.

Mears’ company makes hurricane shutters and customers are going to be in shock when they call on Tuesday.

“They’re not going to be happy, but it’s something we have no control over,” he said.

Mears says he has to raise his prices, because of this letter he got from Easter Metal Supply in West Palm Beach.

It says that prices are going up because of supply, demand, and the aluminum tariff. Prices will go up 6 percent on Tuesday, and a total of 18 percent by May.

Mears says he has to pass that cost down to his customers.

“Our homeowners will feel about 12 to 10 percent price increase ,” he said.

Michael Koroulakis, one of Mears' customers, is lucky--- he ordered his shutters before the price hike, but says Trump’s plan wasn’t well thought out.

“Every time a price goes up for some reason who pays for it? The consumer,” he said.

Mears says his supplier usually only uses American aluminum, but because there’s not enough supply of it in the U.S. to keep up with all the demand, they need to get it from other countries at a higher price.

But Mears says the loss is worth it in the long-run.

“Even if it costs me money as a business owner lost business or whatever I think the trade that we have now is unfair,” he said.

According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, the only countries that are exempt from the tariff so far are Canada and Mexico.

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