Avoid Tax-Free Weekend Woes

The start of the new school year is just around the corner. And this weekend brings one of the most popular, or feared, shopping holidays of the year – tax-free weekend. The Black Friday of summer, every mall, Target, Wal-Mart and school supply store in the great state of Texas will be swarming with families doing their back-to-school shopping. Before you head out to take advantage of the deals, be sure you know what you can and cannot expect to pay tax for. We have compiled a list, with the help of the Houston Chronicle, of tax-free tips.

Tax-free weekend was originally established to help families save on back-to-school supplies and expenses. People have gotten awfully creative with what they think classifies as a “back-to-school supply”. These days, not only are backpacks and school supplies tax-free, but the Chronicle reveals you can also find deals on swimsuits, diapers, leotards and fishing vests…because everyone knows the first day of school often requires reeling in a trophy fish.

There are also some items that are mistakenly thought to be included in tax-free weekend. Don’t try to argue with the checkout clerk if you’re trying to buy jewelry, a wallet or briefcase, golf cleats or roller skates, because all of these items are taxable, and generally not required for the first day of school, even if some consider golf cleats and roller skates to be footwear. Although, you could argue the point that briefcases are the big kid’s backpack, especially if you are a teacher. You will not receive a tax-free discount on any sewing kits or alterations for the school uniforms you just bought, either.

The team here at Integrate Public Relations plans on taking advantage of some of the savings, but wants to know how you get the most out of tax-free weekend. Do you have any tax-free savings secrets? Tell us about it on Facebook or Twitter!