2011 Sales Tax Holiday Schedule

Sales tax is just one of those expenses we typically ignore. Every time we make a purchase the tax is just automatically added to the bill and since there’s nothing we can do about it’s easy to just forget about it or automatically factor it in. Plus, since often times we make just small purchases, the few extra percent in tax isn’t enough to garner much attention. But in many states, sales tax can really add up with many states charging between 5 and 7 percent. Think about it. For every $1,000 you spend, you’re likely paying between $50 and $70 extra. If you could buy something on sale for 5-7% off you probably would, right? Well, with this fall’s sales tax holiday you can do just that.

Many states have initiated a sales tax holiday in order to help families to buy supplies they want and need, but also coincide with back-to-school shopping. Most tax holidays help parents save money for school supplies and provide a temporary boost to retail business. The sales tax holiday can include clothes, personal items, and even certain types of electronic equipment. A growing number of states have implemented these holidays, although there are still a number of states with a sales tax that do not participate. I should know, because I live on the Michigan and Indiana border and do my shopping there, but neither state takes part.

Alabama

August 5-7 Covers up to $100 worth of clothes, up to $750 for computers, $50 for school supplies, and $30 for books. - http://www.revenue.alabama.gov/

Arkansas

August 6-7 Covers up to $100 for clothes and all school supplies. - http://www.dfa.arkansas.gov

Connecticut

August 21-27, Covers clothing and footwear up to $300. - http://www.ct.gov/

Florida

August 12-14, Covers books, clothing and footwear under $50 and school supplies under $10. - http://dor.myflorida.com/

Iowa

August 5-6, Covers clothing and footwear under $100 per item. - http://www.iowaccess.org/tax/

Louisiana

August 5-6, Covers most personal property. - http://www.revenue.louisiana.gov/

Maryland

August 13-19, Clothing or footwear under $100 excluding accessory items. - http://www.comp.state.md.us/

Massachusetts

August 13-14. Anything under $2500 . - http://www.mass.gov/

Mississippi

July 29 ’ 30, Clothing and footwear <$100. - http://www.dor.ms.gov/

Missouri

August 5-7, Clothing under $100 each, school supplies under $50 each, computer and equipment under $3500. – http://www.dor.mo.gov/tax/

New Mexico

August 5-7, Clothing and footwear under $100 each, school supplies under $15 each, computers under $1000 and computer equipment under $500. - http://www.tax.newmexico.gov/

North Carolina

August 6-8, Covers clothing under $100 per item, school instructional materials <$300 per item, sports & rec equipment under $50 per item, computers/software/computer supplies <$250 per item. November 5-7 Energy star rated appliances for non-business purposes. - http://www.dornc.com/

Oklahoma

August 5-7, Covers clothing and footwear under $100 each. - http://www.tax.ok.gov/

South Carolina

August 5-7, Covers clothing, school supplies computers & computer software, and linens. October 1-31 Covers qualified Energy Star items for personal use less than $2,5000. - http://www.sctax.org/

Tennessee

August 5-7 Clothing under $100 per item, School and Art Supplies under $100 per item, and Computers under $1500 per bundled package. - http://tn.gov/revenue/

Texas

August 19-21, Clothing and footwear under $100, and backpacks under $100. May 28-30 Energy star products , air conditioners under $6000, and other products under $2000. - http://www.window.state.tx.us/

Virginia

August 5-7, under $20 per item and clothing & footwear under $100 per item. October 7-10 Energy Star Qualified products including appliances purchased for personal use under $2,500 each. - http://www.tax.virginia.gov/

States Without Sales Tax

Don’t see your state on the list? Well, there is good news and bad news. The good news is you may live in a state that doesn’t have a state-wide sales tax to begin with. Residents of Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon fall into this category. But if you don’t live in one of these states and don’t see your state listed above, you’re on the hook for sales tax all year long. Sorry.

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About the Author: Jeremy Vohwinkle is a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor® and spent a few years working as a financial planner. Today, he helps people make the most of their money by writing about personal finance here and elsewhere on the web. Jeremy is also Coach at Adaptu and a regular contributor for other publications such as Intuit, and American Express. Be sure to follow Jeremy on Twitter or Google+.

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