5 Money-saving Tips for Back-to-School Shopping

August 4, 2014
Numerous states offer a sales tax holiday on back-to-school shopping items like clothing, school supplies, and computers.

Numerous states offer a sales tax holiday on back-to-school shopping items like clothing, school supplies, and computers.

Back-to-school shopping is in full force in many parts of the country. Parents are loading up their shopping carts with notebooks, folders, pens, pencils, glue, and all the essentials to ensure their kidlets are prepared for the upcoming school year. To help you reduce your back-to-school shopping bill, here are a few money-saving tips to consider:

– Take advantage of sales tax holidays.

This year, 15 U.S. states have confirmed that they are offering sales tax holidays before the school year kicks off for back-to-school shopping. These states include:

– Alabama
– Arkansas
– Connecticut
– Florida
– Georgia
– Iowa
– Louisiana
– Maryland
– Mississippi
– New Mexico
– Oklahoma
– South Carolina
– Tennessee
– Texas
– Virginia

These tax-free holidays vary from one state to another, but they broadly include tax exemptions on clothing, footwear, computers, computer accessories, school supplies, books, and other relevant items. Shoppers can certainly enjoy greater tax savings by purchasing more expensive items during these tax holidays, such as computers, new clothes, and new shoes. But the cost of a shopping cart full of items can obviously add up, so make arrangements to shop during these tax holidays.

– Take advantage of back-to-school sales and discounts.

Many retailers offer “back-to-school blowout sales” in the weeks leading up to the start of a school year, generally throughout the month of August. Be on the lookout for any sales, specials, discounts, coupons, and other opportunities to save money on school supplies or clothing. If you can pick up some discounted items and don’t have to pay sales tax on them, it’s a double dose of money savings. But even if your state doesn’t offer a sales tax holiday, you should be able to find ways to spend less and get more through the various sales out there.

– Consider shopping online.

The Internet is packed with so many retail websites that sell every school supply under the sun. Not only can you find lower prices on items through the web, but also you may be able to save on sales tax by going through an online retailer that doesn’t charge it. Explore some of the many bidding sites as well where you can find low-priced items and bulk packages of things like pens, pencils, crayons, or paper.

– Only buy what the kids really need.

Many schools provide students with a  list of school supplies and reading materials a few weeks before classes begin. Be sure to bring this list with you when you hit the stores. It’s easy to pick up items along the way that your kids simply won’t use. Plus, kids often beg for things they only want, so do your best to supply them with only the things that will truly come in handy for them to make straight A’s. When it comes to clothing, your kids may not need to be wearing the most expensive brands out there, either.

– Look around your home office for supplies you already have.

If you are one of the many self-employed small business owners out there with a home office, there might be some supplies right under your nose that your kids can use in the classroom, reducing your overall back-to-school shopping bill. Perhaps you have some extra pens, pencils, loose-leaf paper, folders, notebooks, markers, tape, or other supplies lying around to put in your child’s backpack. Check the rest of your house as well so that you aren’t buying items you already have.

For more money-saving tips and ways to reduce your tax liability, work with the accounting experts at 1-800Accountant. Call 1-800-222-6868 or check out www.1-800Accountant.

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