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Sales tax holiday gives shoppers a break

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Shoppers began to advantage of the sales tax holiday on energy- and water-efficient appliances on Friday, its first day.

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Ramon Gartrell helps Sharonda Henry at Davis Appliance & Furniture. Georgia's sales tax holiday on energy- and water-efficient products runs through Sunday.  JON-MICHAEL SULLIVAN/STAFF
JON-MICHAEL SULLIVAN/STAFF
Ramon Gartrell helps Sharonda Henry at Davis Appliance & Furniture. Georgia's sales tax holiday on energy- and water-efficient products runs through Sunday.

Through Sunday, Georgia is eliminating the sales tax on appliances marked with the Energy Star or WaterSense labels.

The labels mean those products meet guidelines set forth by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy for conservation.

Butler Thorne said the tax holiday is the reason he waited until Friday to purchase a new dishwasher. His old one was very noisy.

He went to Best Buy earlier in the week to look at one, but when he heard about the holiday he chose to wait until this weekend.

“The fact that the holiday came up worked out perfect,” he said.

The Bosch dishwasher he bought had an original price of $1,000, which would have saved him $70 on the sales tax alone. But with the tax break and a sale the store is running, he ended up paying only $750.

By midafternoon, Best Buy saleswoman Indi Hollis said Thorne was her fourth tax-free appliance customer of the day. She said that the number of sales was not unusual and that, to her knowledge, nothing special was done to prepare for the holiday.

“We have our moments in sales, so today might be my good day because its tax-free,” she said.

On a typical day, she said, customers stream in throughout the day, much as they did Friday.

At Davis Appliance, owner Paul Davis Jr. said the tax break brought a lot of business.

“Everybody seems to have known about it,” he said.

One customer bought a package consisting of a washer, dryer and a refrigerator.

“She said the washer is still working great, but she wanted to upgrade because of the holiday weekend,” he said.

Not everyone turned out for the tax break.

Sharonda Henry was at Davis Appliance to buy a living room suite and was also interested in a washing machine and a dryer. The holiday “had no bearing on it,” she said.

Henry is moving and wanted to compare prices before she settled on a purchase. She wanted to make sure that by buying them on a payment plan her purchase would be reported to the credit bureau.

“I’m trying to get all of my furniture and everything else now and then move in. And also trying to rebuild my credit at the same time,” she said.


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