Nearly every post like this from a Financial Advisor, Financial Planner, Financial Guy/Gal, Investment Manager (or whatever else financial professionals are calling themselves nowadays) is going to revolve around doing something smart with your tax refund check. Things like pay off debt, save it, or invest it. While those are all shrewd things to do with your little windfall, I wanted to give you some additional fiscally sound things to spend that money on. Maybe a few things that you may not have thought of. Ideas that may not have a massive impact on your balance sheet, but will (hopefully) generate some new memories, and maybe have a profound impact on your life and/or the life of another. Most of the suggestions below will probably cost less than $500. Use the rest of your refund to pay off debt, save or invest!
Okay, here we go:
- If you have kids, take a little family trip. On the cheap. To a place that they will have a blast at for a few days. A water park, a cool hotel, or maybe a zoo they haven’t been to before. It could be something as simple as a trip to a McDonald’s with a nice play place the kids haven’t been to before. Combined that with an overnight stay in a hotel that has an awesome pool and mean breakfast spread.
- Buy something for under $250 that you’ve been really wanting lately but have been too guilt-ridden to pull the trigger on. Maybe some Beats® headphones, maybe a 12-inch subwoofer for your car. A new putter or a tattoo, perhaps. Blow that $250 and have fun doing it.
- Give some of that tax refund to a charity that you’re passionate about. I love animals. If I was able to, I’d have 500 pets (no lie). Ducks, cats, rabbits, turtles, raccoons. I don’t really care as long as it has 4 legs. You’ve got some passions. Donate some of that dough to a soup kitchen, to St Jude, or something like that. Give some to a family you know who has fallen on hard times. I bet they would appreciate it more than you realize.
- Pay off that dumb credit card that you’ve been trying to for a while now. You know, the one you haven’t been able to fully pay off for some time now. Trust me, it will feel great.
- Don’t take your refund check and buy a new car if your current ride is paid for. Instead of going into more debt with a new car, use some of that tax refund money to get new tires, get a tune up, fix those brakes or take care of whatever else may need repaired. I bet if you did some of those things, you’d squeeze another year or so out of your current car. Get it detailed. It’ll look like the first day you drove it. I had no idea how to change my spark plugs, but I watched a YouTube video and completed the task in about 30 minutes. The plug was like $8. I had to replace another part which was about $40 at the same time. Now it runs like a top. Purrs like a kitten. I probably saved myself $75 in labor.
- Give some money to your church if you have one that you regularly attend. You and I both know they would greatly appreciate it, and most likely put it to good use.
- If you go to a gym, ask them if you pre-pay for 6-months or a year if they’ll give you a discount. I bet they would.
There you go folks. No excuses this year. I just gave you some fantastic ideas on how to spend some (notice I said some) of your tax refund check. Notice I didn’t say anything about blowing all of it on clothes, shoes, electronics or putting it down towards a new car. Everyone’s situation is different so if you truly need a new car then so be it. If your iPhone just died and you need a new one, then I get that too.
If you’re reading this, then you’re probably an adult. Just be smart.
Okay, that’s it. I’m done.