Parents look forward to Tax-Free Weekends during back-to-school every year. Not only can you save a good deal of money, but depending on where you shop, you can also find some really great sales as well. The one thing you absolutely must have in your arsenal before you hit the stores though?
- Gather Your List. Be sure to visit your child’s school website to download the school supply list so you know exactly what will be needed their first few weeks of school. You also want to make a list of every article of clothing your children will need – socks, underwear, sweatshirts, jeans, t-shirts, undershirts, pajamas – write it all down and be sure you have the correct sizes too! The past few months of frolicking almost always ensures a growth spurt of some sort!
- Plan Your Stores. I don’t have to tell you that dragging two or three kids around to ten different stores is not a smart plan. Not only will there be meltdowns when someone gets tired of shopping, but if you have a child who will only wear clothing from one store, and one child who will only wear clothing from another? You have the makings of a major hissy fit on your hands.
- Use Coupons. Check the local sales flyers, grab coupons from the store website and/or Facebook page, and be sure to check out our Coupon Central page that has awesome deals on everyday items you need as well as some truly killer deals for the stores you love! 50% off everything at Old Navy sound good? 75% off select items at Macy’s? These are just a sample of what you’ll find on our Coupon Central page!
- Shop Existing Sales. Be sure to get as much as you can that is already on sale! Of course, if the item you want never goes on sale, then getting it tax-free can be a pretty decent deal. The whole idea is to combine tax-free with items that are already on sale or you have coupons for to make the shopping even better!
2016 Tax-Free Holiday Chart
The following chart is courtesy of the Federation of Tax Administrators. You can find additional state-specific information such as rules and restrictions by clicking on the link to the state. States in red italics have their sales tax holiday in July.
|State||Items Included & Maximum Cost||Date Begins||Date Ends|
|Alabama||$100 – clothing
$750 – computers
$50 – school supplies
$30 – books
|Arkansas||$100 – clothing
|Connecticut||$100 – clothing and footwear||8/21||8/27|
|Florida||$60 – clothing
$15 – supplies
$100 – clothing
$20 – supplies
$1,000 – computers
|Iowa||$100 – clothing||8/5||8/6|
|Louisiana||all TPP – $2,500 (2% rate reduction)||8/5||8/6|
|Maryland||$100 – clothing & footwear||8/14||8/20|
|Mississippi||$100 – clothing & footwear||7/29||7/30|
|Missouri||$100 – clothing
$3,500 – computers
$50 – school supplies
|New Mexico||$100 – clothing
$1,000 – computers
$500 – computer equipment
$30 – school supplies
|Ohio||$75 – clothing
$20 – school supplies
$20 – instructional material
|Oklahoma||$100 – clothing||8/5||8/7|
|Tennessee||$100 – clothing
$100 – school supplies
$1,500 – computers
|Texas||$100 – clothing, backpacks & school supplies||8/5||8/7|
|Virginia||$100 – clothing
$20 – school supplies
$2,500 – Energy Star products
$60 – hurricane preparedness items
$1,000 – generators
Hanover County Public Schools
To help my fellow Hanover County, Virginia parents out – below is a listing of all elementary, middle, and high schools so you can be on top of your game and have all of your supply lists downloaded, your clothing and footwear items mapped out, and ready to shop beginning August 5.
Hanover County Elementary Schools
- Battlefield Park
- Cold Harbor
- Cool Spring
- Henry Clay
- John M. Gandy
- Kersey Creek
- Laurel Meadow
- Pearson’s Corner
- Pole Green
- Rural Point
- South Anna
Hanover County Middle Schools
Hanover County High Schools
How Much Can I Save on Tax-Free Weekend?
Let’s face it, if you pay a high state sales tax, then tax-free weekend is a financial relief for your screaming wallet when it comes to school shopping, especially with more than one child. Unfortunately, most stores don’t feature any huge sales or offer any discounts during tax-free weekend. While you might be tempted to stock up on jeans and hoodies for the teenagers, you might be better off waiting for Old Navy or Rue21 to have a storewide sale when you can get 30 to 50% off the merchandise.
Overview of Virginia Exempt Items:
School Supplies, Clothing, and Footwear:
- Qualified school supplies – $20 or less per item
- Qualified clothing and footwear – $100 or less per item
- Detailed list of school supplies, clothing and footwear
Hurricane and Emergency Preparedness Items:
- Portable generators – $1,000 or less per item
- Gas-powered chain saws – $350 or less per item
- Chainsaw accessories – $60 or less per item
- Other specified hurricane preparedness items with a sales price of $60 or less per item
- Detailed list of hurricane preparedness items
Energy Star™ and WaterSense™ Items:
Qualifying items carrying either the Energy Star™ or WaterSense™ label with a sales price of $2,500 or less purchased for noncommercial home or personal use.
- Qualifying Energy Star™ items include dishwashers, clothes washers, air conditioners, ceiling fans, light bulbs, dehumidifiers, and refrigerators
- Qualifying WaterSense™ items include bathroom sink faucets, faucet accessories such as aerators and shower heads, toilets, urinals, and landscape irrigation controllers
- Detailed list of Energy Star™ and WaterSense™ items
Detailed information on the sales tax holiday:
This should give my Virginia moms and dads a good start on their back-to-school shopping game plan and help me other American moms and dads put a game plan together as well!
Come back to this post and leave us a comment about the exceptional deal(s) that you received during your state tax-free weekend!
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Disclosure – I have teenagers who constantly need something and a husband who thinks items like race cars and boats are toys. So, throughout the blog you will find affiliate links that enable me to buy a bottle or two or three of wine to keep my sanity intact.