If you have been thinking about purchasing any new appliances, you can avoid paying MO state sales tax if you purchase them between April 19 – April 25.

The Show-Me Green Sales Tax Holiday began in 2009. Each year, consumers are able to purchase qualifying energy star certified new appliances and eliminate paying MO sales tax on the first $1500 per appliance.

You don’t have to live in Missouri to be eligible. Anyone can shop in a Missouri brick and mortar store location and take advantage of the savings. Since delivery can occur after the tax holiday, I’m assuming it would be possible for a non-Missouri resident to shop in at a local store of a national chain (such as Best Buy) and then arrange for delivery to their home after they return home.

You can purchase online (I’m assuming that you need to have it shipped to a MO address or purchase from a MO store) and you can make business purchases.

Eligible Purchases:

The following energy star certified appliances qualify for the holiday this year.

  • Clothes washers
  • Water heaters
  • Dishwashers
  • Air conditioners
  • Furnaces
  • Refrigerators
  • Freezers
  • Heat pumps

In future years, it may be possible to purchase these items during the holiday too:

  • Clothes dryers
  • Trash compactors
  • Conventional ovens
  • Ranges
  • Stoves

According to the Energy Star Website, clothes dryers, trash compactors, conventional ovens, ranges and stoves do not currently receive an energy star rating.  Until these items do receive energy star ratings, they will not be eligible for the sales tax holiday. They are included in the eligible list because it is anticipated that at some point in the future the energy star program will include these items, and at that point, they will be eligible for the Show-Me Green Sales Tax Holiday.

The Fine Print:

Keep in mind that this holiday does not mean you won’t pay ANY tax on the covered items. In most areas, you will still be required to pay an local city, county or district taxes.

In the St. Louis area, our major counties have all opted to NOT exempt the county taxes. However, you should check to see where you can avoid city and district taxes during the holiday. You can also see all of the counties, cities and districts on a map where you can avoid paying local taxes.

Tax rates in the local municipalities also vary dramatically, and it can add up to a lot of money, so it is worth checking this site  and choose a store located in a lower tax rate municipality.

How Much Can You Save by Carefully Choosing the Store Location?

Let’s assume you are going to buy your appliance at a major chain that has stores throughout the area so the purchase price is the same. If you buy a $1000 appliance in most of St. Louis County, the county tax rate is 2.7%, or you will pay $27 in county tax. If you buy that same appliance in St. Charles County with a county tax rate of 1.725%, you will only pay $17.25 in county tax. Make the same purchase in St. Louis City, and you won’t pay any county tax.

You can compare the city tax rates of the stores you are considering here.

If you purchase your appliance at a retailer who has less than 2% of their sales as qualifying purchases, you may have to pay the tax upfront and get a refund. 

For more information, including how to get the sales tax refund if you are purchasing the appliance from a contractor who is installing it for you, see the MO State FAQ page.

Photo credit – Tom Raftery


This article was originally posted on March 18, 2012.