It’s tax season! I’ve partnered with my husband, who is a licensed financial professional, to bring you this amazing post!
Everybody loves getting money back..right? Some people may even plan out what they will be doing with that money. I know my husband and I always plan what to do with our tax return before we even get it. If you plan out what you do with your tax return, you are less likely to spend it on things that you don’t necessarily need. So here are 5 smart ways to use your tax return:
1. Pay down debt.
Close your eyes and think of the 5 people you know. Now open your eyes; how many of those 5 people are currently in debt? According to CNBC, 8 out of 10 Americans are in debt. Americans are in debt more now than they were during the financial crisis. I think it is safe to say that having debt while trying to save money just doesn’t work. By putting a large amount towards your debt, you will end up saving hundreds of dollars in finance charges.
2. Invest in your future.
Now would be a good time to start that retirement account you have been putting on the back burner. If you already have one, use some of your tax return to fund it for the year. 1 out of 3 people under age 30 today will live to age 100. Living longer means needing to have more money to spend in retirement. There’s no such thing as saving TOO MUCH money, especially if its for you and your family’s future.
3. Kids college fund.
How nice would it have been if your parents presented you with an account that had enough money in there to pay for your entire college? How much less stress would you have been under? If education is important to you, set up a proper college fund for your kids. If you don’t have kids and plan on having them in the future, you can still start saving towards their college. The sooner you start, the less you will have to save. It also makes one heck of an 18th birthday present!
4. Invest in your health.
If you don’t exercise already, YOU SHOULD! Get a gym membership. If you already have one, use some of your tax return to buy some supplements or get a personal trainer. Getting fit now and staying in shape can save you a fortune on health bills in the future.
5. Emergency fund.
Tell me if you’ve heard this story before; you start saving money in your savings account and then something comes up and all the money you’ve saved vanishes! This is what happens to most people in our country. The average American’s emergency fund is 9 days….9 DAYS! You want to have 6-9 months of your monthly income set aside to have a proper emergency fund. Have you ever heard anyone say, “Oh no! I’ve saved way too much money!!” Yeah, me neither. Build that emergency fund!
The average American will spend their tax money on things that will not matter to them or their family in 5 years. They will receive that instant gratification of that new $500 designer purse, or the $800 watch. I promise you when the excitement wears off, the feeling of regret will fester in their thoughts for some time. Trust me on this, I was one of those people. Don’t be average!