Best Money Moves to Make During August

Blog posted On August 11, 2021

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As summer break starts to wind down, back to school planning starts to rev up. For many, it’s time to swap out the flip flops and pool bags for sneakers and backpacks. The month of August is a big month for shopping and spending, but it also has many great opportunities to save. From discounts to sales to tax breaks, there are many smart ways you can spend (or save) your money this month.

  1. Do your back to school shopping during tax holidays.

Back to school supplies are expected to reach all-time high prices this year. To help ease the financial stress of back-to-school shopping, several states are offering tax-free holidays throughout the month of August. In 2021, the following states will have tax holidays throughout August:

  • Arkansas
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Iowa
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Missouri
  • New Mexico
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia

Depending on the state, you could save between 4% and 7% on taxes for school supplies and clothing. However, make sure that you do your shopping on the right days. You can check the dates of the tax-free holidays in your state here.

  1. Unenroll from future child tax credit payments.

August 13, millions of parents will receive a direct deposit of $300 per child into their bank account. This will be the second payment of six. Most people wont need to take action, but if you want to opt out of the third payment or update your deposit information, you will need to do so before Monday, August 31. Some parents might have different tax situations and want to avoid the extra tax bill by opting out of payments completely. The IRS has also stated that the Child Tax Credit Update Portal will be available this month – allowing parents to update their home address and reroute where your monthly checks are being sent.

  1. Take advantage of National Financial Awareness Day.

August 14 is National Financial Awareness Day. If you haven’t checked up on your budget, savings, or investments in a while, this might be a good opportunity to do so. Maybe your priorities have changed, or your spending habits need to be adjusted with the post-COVID reopening. Maybe you want to start saving for a down payment or putting more money toward high-interest debt. “Have your goals changed?” asks Tess Zigo, a financial advisor with Emerge Wealth Strategies. “I’d review your investments to make sure they still fit your big picture and big goals.”

  1. Buy some extra stamps before prices rise.

On August 29, the price of certain stamps will rise to $0.93. Standard stamps will rise marginally as well, up to $0.58. This will be the second stamp price hike in 2021. If you’re a small-business owner or a passionate letter writer, then now might be the time to stock up on stamps. 

It’s a good idea to reassess your budget every few weeks to see what important expenditures you need to prepare for every month. Back to school shopping may not be a priority for everyone, but it can be a big end-of-summer cost for some. If you need help preparing your finances, we have several good professional recommendations that could be of use.


Sources: Money, FTA