Back-to-school shopping in Tennessee without breaking the bank


Tennessee's tax-free holiday runs through Sunday, but for some families a break from sales tax isn't enough.

Back-to-school shopping could add up to anywhere between $200 and $400 per student, according to the National Education Association.

Getting a break from sales tax on clothes, computers, and school supplies helps. Some families, especially those with several kids, say the cost is still too much.

"We're filling up the cart with school supplies, and then they all need new sneakers and new sandals because they've grown over the summer and backpacks, and lunchboxes" said Jennifer Torres who chooses to shop at Goodwill. "It just all adds up very quickly."

For about a decade, the tax free weekend fell on the first week of August. Last year, state lawmakers moved it to the end of July as districts began to start school earlier.

Families, who normally get paid on the first of the month, either miss out on the tax holiday or go shopping now and wait for their checks to clear next week.

Goodwill has a loophole, spokesperson Chris Fletcher said.

"At Goodwill, clothing and shoes are always tax free, every day," Fletcher said.

So no matter what your budget or when you get paid, you don't have to break the bank to get back to school.

Click here for a complete list of tax-exempt items.

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