Opinion: Stellar Money Moves to Make in August

Daniella Cressman

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Disclaimer: This information is accurate and true to the best of my knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

So far, this has been a very difficult year with inflation hitting a high just as we were recovering from the pandemic, not to mention the recent outbreak of monkeypox.

Due to all of this difficult, many families and individuals are struggling, so it's important to make your money work for you whenever you can.

1. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF TAX-FREE HOLIDAYS (IF POSSIBLE)

Quite a few people are taking advantage of the upcoming tax-free holiday running from August 5-7 in many states.

"More than a dozen states host annual tax-free holidays to help parents and students prepare for the upcoming school year or semester. What that means for you, if you live in one of those states, is that sales tax won’t be applied to certain school-related items at retailers. That translates into a discount of about 4% to 7% depending on where you live. That may not sound like much at first, but it can add up." —Adam Hardy

Sales tax might seem minimal at first, but that small percentage can truly add up, especially if you have to buy large purchases such as laptops and backpacks.

You'll want to read the fine print since participating is often optional for retailers and only some items will be tax-free.

2. MONITOR FEDERAL STUDENT LOAN UPDATES

"The federal student loan forbearance period is nearing its Aug. 31 expiration date. If you’re one of the nearly 40 million borrowers who have federal loans that are eligible for the ongoing payment pause, you might already know this. The deadline for payments to resume has already been extended six times. Many are wondering if President Joe Biden will push back the date yet again. Some experts think another extension is probable." —Adam Hardy

Additionally, you'll want to watch the news surrounding President Biden's potential course of action: You could be able to reduce your student loans significantly!

"You’ll want to keep an eye out for any notices from your loan servicer — an indication loans are about to resume. Or, you’ll want to stay on top of the news to see if another extension is officially announced. Experts are also expecting Biden to unveil plans for student loan forgiveness in tandem with a decision about the forbearance. Many assumed this announcement would come in April, but Biden has remained fairly tight-lipped. The president has said he would make a decision by the end of August, and he has signaled that he is in favor of forgiving $10,000 of federal student debt per borrower — possibly with an income cap between $125,000 to $150,000." —Adam Hardy

3. SUPPORT BLACK-OWNED BUSINESSES

Unfortunately, many people in the black community struggle to make ends meet financially, and the systemic oppression doesn't help—a lot of white individuals have inherited immense wealth from their ancestors who were slavemasters.

Our history is sordid, but thankfully some progress has been made even though we still have a long way to go.

If you want to vote with your dollar, supporting black-owned businesses is an excellent way to show your support.

Of course, every month is a good month to do this, but August is actually National Black Business Month, so this is a particularly excellent time to invest in products you love from black-owned companies!

"Every month is a good month to make a point to shop at Black-owned businesses. But as National Black Business Month, August is an especially great month to do so." —Adam Hardy

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Canadian-American author writing about local politics, personal finance, & dining in Albuquerque.

Albuquerque, NM
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