ATC Insider

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Making Back-to-School Shopping a Breeze

  8/10/2018 8:57:33 PM

Making Back-to-School Shopping a Breeze

Back-to-school shopping is quickly becoming one of the biggest seasons of the year, second only to Christmas in terms of family expenditures. Spending for school supplies and other necessities can easily add up, so doing your back-to-school shopping early and intelligently can help you save money while still providing your child with everything they need to succeed. Here are four quick tips that will help make the transition from summer to school a cinch:

  1. Make a list and stick to it. Before ever setting foot in a store, make a list of everything you need for the new school year - including school supplies, sports equipment and clothes/uniforms. Having everything compiled in one place will ensure you aren’t forgetting anything and will save you from inconvenient, last-minute store runs.

  2. Declutter your space and take inventory. To successfully make a list of everything you need, it can be helpful to go through rooms or study spaces to inventory school supplies that you already have. Set aside a day or two to re-organize and declutter bedrooms, closets and study spaces. You can then sell or donate any gently used clothes and unnecessary items. Spending time going through these spaces will also make staying organized during the year much easier!

  3. Take advantage of sales. Once you know exactly what you need to purchase, make sure you are taking advantage of back-to-school saving events and sales. Most, if not all, of the stores you’ll be heading to will have some sort of discount or way for you to save on the items you need. Don’t be afraid to ask about discounts for loyalty and rewards programs or special discounts for teachers, active duty military, veterans and first responders. You can also shop online and check your favorite stores’ websites for opportunities to compare prices.

  4. Shop Tax-Free Weekend (Aug. 10-12, 2018). Tax-Free Weekend is also a great opportunity to shop for what you need, but not everything is eligible to be tax-free. Be sure you double-check what items on your list are eligible for waived sales tax by referencing the Comptroller’s rules before you go shopping. A good rule-of-thumb for determining if your shopping cart is going to be tax-free is if:

  • Your school supplies are on the Comptroller’s list of approved items. Computers, software and textbooks, however, are not approved.
  • Clothing and shoes are under $100 apiece. However, athletic-wear, clothing subscription boxes, clothing rental services, items used to make clothing (such as fabric or needles and thread), jewelry, handbags, briefcases, wallets, watches, and other accessories are NOT eligible for tax-free weekend. Specific clothing exemptions can be found here.
  • The backpack you chose isn’t a piece of luggage, briefcase, gym bag, computer bag or purse.

Make sure to stop by Alliance Town Center and take advantage of back-to-school sales at some of your favorite places to shop! Find a complete list of Alliance Town Center stores here.

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