Aug 7

Tax Free VA & MD Dates

VA_Sales_Tax_Holiday_Weekend_August     Shop Maryland Tax Free Week
August is a top retail month as many parents and students get in gear for the new school year, but did you know this month also happens to have special tax-free shopping days? Starting this weekend in Virginia and all next week in Maryland, shoppers can save money by shopping tax free on qualified purchases.

What You Need To Know about the 2015 Tax Exempt Shopping Days.

(1) It varies by state.

Only 17 states offer a sales tax holiday. Thankfully both VA & MD are included. Each state has its own set of dates, some for a weekend, others for a full week, with the majority occurring in the month of August.

Each state sets the guidelines and rules regarding what qualifies as a tax free purchase. Many set a maximum retail price per item, which can be tax exempt.

(2) VA & MD are participating, but not DC.

Virginia: Fri. Aug. 7 – Sun. Aug. 9.
Qualifying purchases during this weekend will be exempt from the normal VA state and local taxes, typically 5% of the purchase price. The VA tax holiday is the first full weekend (Friday – Sunday) in August since 2006.

Maryland: Sun. Aug. 9 – Sat. Aug. 15.
The second Sunday of August to the following Saturday is designated as Shop Maryland tax-free Week each year. Qualifying apparel and footwear $100 or less, per item, are exempt from regular state sales tax.

DC: Sorry DC residents.
There is no tax free week/weekend for those living in the District. The DC sales tax holidays in August and November, were repealed in 2010.

(3) The tax holiday has changed since last year.

In previous years Virginia has had three separate tax exempt holidays for school supplies, hurricane and emergency preparedness, and EnergyStar and WaterSense products. This year, Virginia legislation enacted by the General Assembly has combined the three separate sales tax holidays into one. Beginning the first Friday in August and going through the following Sunday, this combined tax-free weekend is new.

(4) Save On Clothes & Footwear

Qualifying clothing, apparel and footwear items must be $100 or less, per item. There is no maximum on the amount of qualifying items you can purchase during the tax-free holiday. This is a great time to buy clothes for this upcoming school year or update your fall wardrobe. Be sure to look for great sales & promotions, as well as clearance items from retailers during the tax-free holiday.

Includes: Shirts, Slacks, Shorts, Jeans, Skirts, Shoes, Underwear, Hats, Belts, Coats, Jackets, Gloves, etc.

(5) Virginia Only:

Save On School Supplies

  • Qualifying items must be $20 or less, per item.
  • Includes: Calculators, binders, book bags, lunch boxes, glue, notebooks, legal pads, pencils, markers, etc.
  • Includes Select Types of Paper: Loose leaf ruled notebook paper, copy & printer paper, graph paper, tracing paper, manila paper, colored paper, poster board and construction paper.
  • NEW this year: Computer storage media are included in tax exempt holiday: recordable compact disks, diskettes and flash drives.

Save On Hurricane & Emergency Preparedness

  • Portable generators – $1,000 or less per item.
  • Gas-powered chainsaws – $350 or less per item.
  • Chainsaw accessories – $60 or less per item.
  • Other specified hurricane preparedness items with a sales price of $60 or less per item.

Save On EnergyStar & Water Sense

  • Qualifying items carrying either the Energy Star or WaterSense label with a sales price of $2,500 or less purchased for noncommercial home or personal use.
  • Qualifying Energy Star items include: dishwashers, clothes washers, air conditioners, ceiling fans, light bulbs, dehumidifiers, and refrigerators.
  • Qualifying WaterSense items include: bathroom sink faucets, faucet accessories such as aerators and shower heads, toilets, urinals, and landscape irrigation controllers.

(6) Maryland Only:

Laundry & Dry Cleaning Services (Non-Commercial), Rented Shoes (no hard plastic or metal cleats & spikes), Rented Tuxedos & Formalwear.

(7) Unexpected Items Will Be Tax-Free in Both VA & MD.

An added benefit of shopping during your state’s tax-free holiday is that you can avoid paying state sales tax on all clothing and even some unexpected items.

  • Diapers,
  • Formalwear for men & women.
  • Bathing Suits,
  • Uniforms,
  • Costumes,
  • Lab Coats,
  • Religious clothing & Clerical vestments,
  • Lingerie & sleepwear

You can find a list of guidelines and participating items on the VA Department of Taxation’s website and the Comptroller of Maryland website.


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