Rising Auto Parts Prices Correlate to Rise in Auto Theft

UPDATED 11/18/20

When you have a car that needs auto repair, there are a lot of options available to you. Virtually all car lots offer some type of repair service, but they can be extremely expensive. If you have any knowledge of cars and the way they work, it can be helpful to your budget to buy the auto parts and fix the vehicle yourself. In the auto car trade, this can save you an enormous amount of money as well as the hassle of spending a lot of time at the car lot waiting for your vehicle.

The next time that you are out auto finding, be sure to contact auto and homeowners insurance companies right away to keep yourself insured. It’s so important to have a good insurance policy in case anything should happen to your vehicle. With a good auto policy on your car, you can have more peace of mind, knowing that things will be taken care of if you have an accident. When you have the right insurance on your vehicle, you also stay legal to drive in your state. The penalties for not having insurance coverage can cost you an enormous amount of money that you may not have.

The rising prices in the automobile industry are cause for much more than some extra mileage on your old ride.

With the higher prices of vehicles and thus the parts that compose them, car theft is becoming much more of a lucrative business.

According to The Times of Northwest Indiana, “even reasonably rudimentary components are becoming prohibitively costly to replace these days, and their rising “street value” is prompting a rise in auto thefts.”

A report by National Insurance Crimes Bureau, also outlined in the NWI article, states that a 2016 Toyota Camry was the most stolen new car at the time. The NICB also compiled a list of 15 of the most commonly replaced parts from over 24 million damage appraisals between 2016 and 2017 and found that altogether those parts cost almost $11,000 for a 2016 Toyota Camry. On a 2016 Nissan Altima, those same parts would cost over $14,000 and for a 2016 GMC Sierra 1500 pickup truck, those parts would cost more than $21,000. (It’s also worth noting that the NICB found that during the years 2012 and 2014, more than 125,600 vehicles were reported stolen with the keys left in the vehicle.)

That’s a five-figure payday for a car thief, and with those prices continuing to rise, chop-shops and grand theft autos are becoming more and more frequent.

The NICB also released a report stating that an “aggressive” thief can steal between 10 and 15 converters in just one day. The report claims that roughly 25,000 converters were stolen across the U.S. between 2008 and 2015, marking a 23% rise from reports in 2008.

Of course, wheels and rims are also commonly stolen as well. Although, people also make it easy for thieves to gain access to their vehicles.

In an article published by the Queens Chronicle, there were 10 cases of stolen vehicles in just under a month in Queens, New York. Many of them were a result of the owners leaving their keys in the ignition and exiting the vehicle.

The Senior Vice President and COO of the NICB Jim Schweitzer had this to say about the rising auto thefts,

“For the professional theft ring, stealing and stripping vehicles for parts has always been a lucrative business…On today’s cars and trucks, the parts are often worth more than the intact vehicle and may be easier to move and sell. That’s why we see so many thefts of key items like wheels and tires and tailgates … there’s always a market for them. We support law enforcement efforts, especially the auto theft task forces that focus on these kinds of theft rings. Shutting down a theft ring and a chop shop can have a major impact on reducing thefts in a community.”

In an effort to reduce car thefts, police officers are urging residents to never leave keys in an unlocked vehicle, remove any valuables upon exiting, and ensuring that all doors are locked when not in use. And make sure you know what to do if your car is stolen.

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