Maximize Your Tax Refund: 5 Ways to Put Uncle Sam’s Check to Good Use


Tax season is nerve racking for most people, but it usually ends on a good note in the form of your refund. Some use it for something their family really needs, some use it for a vacation, and some use it as a down payment on a new TV. However, FNB Fox Valley feels it is important to use your tax refund on something a little more important.


Why? Think about it: what is your tax refund? It is money that was withheld from your paychecks throughout the last year; it’s technically the income you would’ve gotten if we didn’t have to pay taxes. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to do something worthwhile with the money, something you probably would’ve done anyway if you had received it in the first place.


With that in mind, here are some ideas we have for a more intelligent use of your tax refund this year.


Pay off your debts- whether it’s paying a little extra on your mortgage payment, finishing off your student loan or paying down your credit card debt from the holidays (more on this next week), it’s all helping you become less of slave to debt.


Build up your emergency fund- the importance of an emergency fund can’t be understated. Life happens, and when it does, it is best to be prepared. You can use your refund to help build up to the recommended three to six months worth of expenses.


Repair your home/car- these are two things we use and depend on every day to keep ourselves and our families safe. Maintaining them is a no-brainer, and your tax refund can be the source of funding you need to get it done.


Contribute to your retirement- this can just be a portion of your refund depending on how large it is and where you are in life. Save a little now to live a lot better later, right?


Stimulate your local economy- if you’re already debt-free, have an emergency fund in place, have a home and vehicle in great condition and are on track for retirement, then by all means get something for yourself. However, make sure it’s something you need and try to buy from a local Fox Valley business to keep the money you spend in the local economy.


Getting a fat check from Uncle Sam may cause you to see dollar signs, but gather yourself and focus on the more important things in life. Check back next week as we discuss five tips for ridding yourself of holiday credit card debt. We hope to see you soon!