If you are one of the several million Americans who is anticipating a sizable tax return refund this year, then you know how very exciting the prospect can be. There are just so many things you can do with that lump sum of cash, right? However, the truth is that most people have great intentions for how they will make use of their tax refunds, only to put it into the checking account and watch it dwindle away on trivialities. The only way you can avoid this situation is to put some careful consideration into how to best reap the rewards of paying your taxes all year. Don’t waste your tax refund. Instead, make it work for you. Here are some ideas for how:
Retirement savings plan. Tax refund time is the perfect time to set up your 401K. Make an appointment with a financial adviser to size up your options (or take advantage of your employer’s 401K program, especially if your employer offers company matching). Contribute as much as the program of choice will allow for, or the total amount of your refund – whichever is greater.
Investments. Have you always been interested in learning how to grow your money through investment instruments? Well, now is the time to do it. Again, this is where a good financial adviser comes in. Weigh out all of your options carefully, and if you have enough money to break into more than one investment, experiment diversifying with some high-risk and some low-risk investment vehicles.
Getting out of debt. Is your mounting credit card debt beginning to eat up the money you could be putting toward saving and investing for your future? Then before you even consider using your tax refund for anything else, pay off that debt! Think of it this way: all of those fees and interest payments will compound the amount of money you owe over the long run – and that equates to more debt than any interest you’d make on an investment.
Your goals. Is there something you’ve been wanting to do for a long time that you just haven’t had the funding for? Perhaps it’s a small business venture, or even a European excursion. Consider your goals and dreams in life, and then consider how much they might cost you. It could be that tax refund time is the perfect time to have the experience of a lifetime.
As you can see, your tax refund can be a great opportunity to get ahead in a number of different ways. Consider these smart choices when you get that long awaited check in the mail, and make this year’s tax refund really count.
About the Author: Jamey Vazguez applies her tax refund to her investment goals and retirement plans every year. She usually keeps about $100 and applies it to some of the best Los Angeles deals she can find, to treat her family, but the rests is invested in her future.