Tax refunds are rolling in. With Americans getting on average more than $3,000 back this year. (Source.)
I personally am not a fan of big returns. I want to keep my money from my paycheck each month. Not give the government an interest-free loan. (Because they would charge YOU 4-7 % interest on a federal student loan!)
But if you are getting money back, why not be smart about where it goes.
1. Set up your starter emergency fund.
If you have not started an emergency fund you can use your tax refund to either start your emergency find or beef up that emergency fund before you start paying off debt.
2. Put it toward your debt snowball.
If you're using the debt snowball method, put the entire thing towards your smallest debt. If it happens to pay off that debt great then roll into the next one.
3. Pad your 3-6 month emergency fund
If you have finished the debt snowball completely put it towards your 3 to 6-month emergency fund.
4. Put it toward a home improvement.
We’re actually going to be hopefully putting in new windows soon and a large sum of money like a windfall would be perfect for putting towards a home improvement project or if you have a sinking fund set up for a home improvement project put it toward that.
5. Save it!
Put it in your general savings. I mean who can’t lose more money in their savings account?
6. Beef up your retirement fund.
I personally am self-employed so any retirement I get comes from my own pocket and not an employer so extra money is always great to beef up that retirement fund so that I am not working for the rest of my natural life.
7. Finally, start your kid's college savings account or 529.
I am so glad that we started this when our older two were very young in fact we got our monthly statement from our children’s college savings account and it currently is getting 14% interest.
8. Add a little to your mortgage
If you’re getting $3000 putting that towards your mortgage would be really beneficial in paying off your home a little bit early.