Top 10 Ideas for Your Tax Refund
By Darlene Arechederra
It's true. Most of us won't become rich from our tax refunds each
year. Imagine, though, what you could accomplish over the next year
just by applying your refund in ways that will reward you -- over
and over again.
Read on, and discover the wonderful things you can do with your
1. Research and Train for a New and Exciting Career
Maybe you've dreamed of a new career, but haven't had the money to
get started. While most training does cost money, it is possible to
train for a new career without breaking the bank. Why not use your
tax refund to pay for your training?
2. Open a New or Gently-Used Car Account
Imagine losing the car payments. You can do this by having money
set aside for your next vehicle. Just tuck away each refund over
the next few years. Make this a yearly habit, and you'll never have
to worry about those car payments again.
3. Open a Clothing Fund for Your Children's Clothes
When you have money set aside for kids' clothing, you can find those
great bargains and discounts -- year round. This will also help you
spend less, while using your credit card less (or avoiding credit
card purchases entirely).
4. Set up a Home Repair Fund
If you're a home owner, you know how those unexpected expenses can
easily mess up your budget. So, why not create your own home repair
fund? Start simply by depositing even $10 or so from each
paycheck. Grow your account by tucking away cash gifts or other
small amounts into your new home repair
5. Open a Vacation Fund
If you allow yourself a set amount to spend each year on your
vacation, you'll learn to leave the majority of the money in your
vacation fund. Aim for spending only one-fourth of it each year, or
a set amount like $500. Keep funding it with your refunds each year.
6. Open a Christmas Account for Next Year
Each year, it seems as if Christmas sneaks up on us, and we end up
counting the number of paychecks we have left before the holidays
hit. And, sometimes, we end up pulling out our handy little credit
card... But, just imagine having next year's holiday expenses
already paid! Why not use part of your refund -- no matter how
small -- to open or grow next year's Christmas account?
7. Open or Add to Your Emergency Account
Let's face it. Emergencies are going to happen. But, wouldn't it
be nice not to worry or stress out over how to pay for these
emergencies? You can make it through your emergency much easier
when you can confidently pay for most any emergency that arises.
8. Use Your Refund to Pay Down Debt
Yes, I know you've heard this one many, many times. But, a word of
caution, though. If you find yourself constantly running a credit
card balance, it's possible you are living beyond your means. Be
sure to put safeguards in place to avoid spending more than you
make, once your tax return has paid off your credit cards.
Otherwise, you could find yourself right back where you started this
time next year.
9. Set up an Expense Fund Just for Your Car
It's a given. We need to keep our vehicles in good running order.
We replace tires, batteries, headlights, fuses -- to name just a
few. Then, we have the bigger ticket items like engine or
transmission problems. Why not ensure you have money set aside,
just in case?
10. Create a Sense of Security Knowing You Have a Backup Plan
While many spend their tax refund almost immediately, consider the
sense of security you'd feel at having set it aside without touching
it. Consider, too, how many hours or weeks you'll work to make that
refund amount again.
(How about a Bonus Tip?)
11. Transform Your Hobby into a Creative Career
Do you have a hobby you love? Have you been waiting for 'extra'
money to transform your hobby into a new career? Set this refund
aside to purchase supplies or materials on sale so you'll be ready
to go. Even a small refund can help provide some of the books or
other tools you may need to get started.
So, there you have them. Ten (okay, eleven) fantastic reasons to
hang onto your tax refund and use it to make your life just a little
bit easier. Why not tuck it into savings first? Then you can move
it to where it can best help you in the future.
Darlene Arechederra is the author of Rat Race Blues for Women. She
shares money-saving articles to help others live a debt-free
lifestyle. Visit Darlene's site today and join her free, money-
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