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As the days start getting shorter, you know it is time to begin the prep work for the new school year. Back-to-School sale events offer you unique opportunities to stock up on new clothes, necessary school supplies and more to get your kiddos perfectly outfitted and ready for the year ahead. During these special days before school starts again, you will find a number of retailers eager to help you save on the items your children need for the classroom.
The good news is that many states throughout the country now offer special weekends where back-to-school purchases of certain items and dollar amounts are not charged any sales tax. Examples in your state may include clothing costing $100 or less per item or computers priced at $750 or less. Inspired by ideas presented by the Passion for Savings blog, here are a few important things to know regarding sales tax when you get ready for your back-to-school shopping adventures.
Since school starts on different dates in different areas of the country, tax-free dates will vary from state to state as well. Typically, these special savings times take place sometime in the month leading up to the first day of school.
Although not all states participate in this yearly tax break, the trend is growing across the country. Here are the states where you can skip the sales tax, along with the dates for this year's savings events:
Alabama has scheduled its tax-free weekend for July 16-18.
Arkansas' tax-free weekend is scheduled for August 7-8.
You can skip the sales tax on school related items in Connecticut during the week of August 15-21.
This year, Florida is extending its tax-free days to run July 31 through August 9.
Iowa offers a sales tax break on school items over the weekend of August 6-7.
You can avoid sales tax in Maryland by shopping for back-to-school items during the week of August 8-14.
Massachusetts is set to allow for tax-free back-to-school shopping from August 28-29.
Mississippi’s tax-free weekend will take place a little earlier, falling on July 30-31.
Missouri offers three days of sales-tax-free school shopping on August 6-8.
Shop for school supplies tax-free in New Mexico on the weekend of August 6-8.
Ohio’s tax-free dates for school supplies and clothing are August 6-8.
Oklahoma offers a break on sales tax for school clothing items purchased during the weekend of August 6-8.
In South Carolina, mark your calendars to save the sales tax on August 6-8.
Shop the tax-free weekend in Tennessee on July 30-August 1.
Texas will give you a break on the sales tax for school-related items during the weekend of August 6-8.
August 6-8 will be this year’s tax-free weekend in Virginia.
West Virginia offers shoppers an extra day of tax-free shopping, extending their dates to July 30-August 2.
Much like the dates for each state’s tax-free days, the qualifying items may vary. It will be important to check with your local retailers or state organizations to find out specifically which items do or do not qualify for this sales tax break.
Typically, clothing is included in the tax breaks for the states listed above. In most areas, school supplies, such as backpacks, pens, pencils, paper and crayons, will also be included in the tax-free category. A few of these states will allow you to purchase computers and computer equipment while saving the sales tax during these special periods. West Virginia has gone as far as giving the tax-free status to sporting equipment that will be used for school sports activities and athletic classes.
Good news! In most cases, items purchased online that would qualify as tax-free items in-store during these tax holidays will also qualify as tax-free when purchased online. Again, it is important to read the fine print to find out exactly which items your state is allowing to be free of sales tax for that period to make sure your purchase qualifies to skip the tax. Also, remember that within your online order, you will still be required to pay tax on any additional items that fall outside of those special tax-free categories.
Although more states are jumping on the tax-free back-to-school bandwagon, there are still many that do not participate in this yearly tax break. Here is a list of the states that do not yet offer a back-to-school tax holiday:
Saving the sales tax is a great place to start when you need to shell out so much money for back-to-school shopping. But be sure to check individual stores for specials on new clothes, shoes, backpacks and other necessities. Many retailers take this time of the year to boost sales by offering parents buy-one-get-one offers, deep discounts on select products and free items with qualifying select purchases. Plus, you may find some of your favorite local restaurants offering special prices during your tax-free weekend, since they know so many people will be looking for a place to grab lunch or dinner during their school shopping trips.
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You’ll already save up to 50% less than department stores, but also TJ Maxx has back to school essentials starting from just $12.99.
Teachers save an extra 10% off, on top of all the Lenovo coupons always available on site.
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Get 2 pairs of shoes for your kids, starting at just $9.95 and including free shipping!
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Yes! Back-to-School season is a time for getting students prepared to head back to the classroom. Purchasing school supplies, buying new clothes and signing up for various activities are all part of the back-to-school season.
Marking the beginning of a new school year is a tradition most families celebrate as their students prepare for new adventures at the next level of their education. This period is meant to encourage and equip these students to succeed in the new school year.
The season for back-to-school sales, events and parties typically takes place near the end of summer. Because the first day of school varies from state to state, the specific back-to-school days for sales and events vary as well. They usually take place anywhere from the latter part of July to mid-August.
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