Getting ready to go back to school? This Friday, Saturday, Sunday (August 9, 10, and 11) has been set as the dates of this year’s annual Sales Tax Holiday/Tax Free Weekend. A recent report by EY (Ernst and Young) says consumers will spend four percent more this year than last. But before you dive into buying new clothes and supplies, check out these back-to-school budget tips from BBB:
Make a shopping list. Even if you don’t know the exact school supply list, you should get an idea of school clothing and other school needs. Make a list for each child, but start by “shopping at home” for items that you may already have left over from last year. For some items, it’s worth spending a bit more (a high quality backpack will last for years).
Create a budget. Do a quick price search online for the items on your list and add them all up. Be sure to clip coupons, and make note of discount codes and any cash-back or rebate programs. If your goal is to reduce spending, now is the time to decide how much you want to cut.
Set up email alerts at your favorite stores. Monitoring pricing early on is key to finding good deals on quality products. Many sites will have an informed community of savvy shoppers on their blog or in their forums who willingly share deals, exclusive coupons, rebates and insider information on where and when to find the best prices, popular models and links to helpful resources. These alerts will assure you don’t miss out on the hottest, and/or limited, opportunities.
Take advantage of discounts. Many stores offer student and teacher discounts on hot items like laptops and uniforms. Retailers will be trying to make room for fall fashion and the newest models, so there are incredible savings to be had on older items.
Texas Sales Tax Holiday/Tax Free Weekend, August 9, 10, and 11, 2013
Senate Bill 485 (83rd Regular Legislative Session, 2013) sets Aug. 9-11 as the dates of this year’s annual Sales Tax Holiday. As in previous years, the law exempts most clothing, footwear, school supplies and backpacks priced under $100 from sales and use taxes, which could save shoppers about $8 on every $100 they spend.
Subject to different criteria, all sales of qualifying items made during the holiday period qualify for the exemption, including items sold online, or by telephone or mail. Lay-away plans can be used again this year to take advantage of the sales tax holiday.
The dates for the sales tax holiday are set by the Legislature.
For more tips you can trust, visit bbb.org and for the latest, follow us on Facebook and Twitter.