You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myAJC.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myAJC.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myAJC.com.

What not to do with your tax refund


It’s that time of year again when tax refunds are on everyone’s mind. A tax refund check can be a wonderful addition to your checking account; a sizable amount can even bring new financial opportunities your way. But if you don’t spend that check from Uncle Sam responsibly, it can also put you in debt. Here are some things you might want to avoid when you get your tax refund. 

1. Spending the Money Before You Receive It 

One of the worst things you can do is spend your tax refund before you’ve even received it. Even if you got a head start on tax season and you know the amount you will receive, you might not want to spend your refund until you have the check in hand. If your refund is delayed, you may be strapped for cash until the check comes in — or worse, wind up in debt.  

2. Go on a Massive Shopping Spree 

Splurging on a big-ticket item or going on a spending spree is a quick way to kiss your tax refund goodbye. If you’re already in debt because of your poor spending habits, try not to dig yourself into a deeper hole. Rather than spend this money on unnecessary items, which can lead to buyer’s remorse, consider using this money to help you pay off your previous spending. 

3. Deposit the Money Into Your Checking Account 

While you may think stashing your tax refund in a checking account will prevent you from spending it right away, it won’t do you much good there. Without a plan for your refund, chances are it will remain in your checking account and later be spent on small, everyday purchases. If you’re unsure of what to do with your tax refund, consider other places to store it. You may want to place it in a checking account that bears interest or a mutual fund to make a return. 

4. Pay for Upgrades You Don’t Need 

Of course, that new iPhone is slimmer and shinier, but is there something wrong with your current phone? When it comes to upgrades, it’s important to first address your needs. When you make an upgrade based on a want rather than a need, you may be quickly wasting your refund. Consider upgrades that will save you money in the long run, such as an energy-efficient appliance, or upgrades that will increase the value of your home like kitchen renovations. 

5. Gamble 

For many, a tax refund, like credit cards, is viewed as free money. While it may be thrilling to know you can double this “free money” on red or black at the casino, there’s also the chance you can lose this cash. You may think you’re right where you left off before tax season, but this is not the case. Consider putting your refund to good use by investing or increasing contributions to retirement funds. This way you can still increase your refund, but with much less risk.

This article originally appeared on Credit.com.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Living

‘The Walking Dead’ recap (‘Something They Need’): season 6, episode 15
‘The Walking Dead’ recap (‘Something They Need’): season 6, episode 15

Sonequa Martin-Green as Sasha Williams – The Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 15 – Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC This was posted by Rodney Ho on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog on Sunday, March 26, 2017 In a story Friday about the health care bill failure, the New York Times delved into the concept of “loss aversion.
‘The Real Housewives of Atlanta’ recap (‘Baby Nups & Breakups’) season 9, episode 18
‘The Real Housewives of Atlanta’ recap (‘Baby Nups & Breakups’) season 9, episode 18

Kandi Burruss and Cynthia Bailey during a shoot for “Real Housewives of Atlanta” October 20, 2017.
TV best bets with series finales of “Bones,” “Duck Dynasty,” “Grimm,” season finale of ‘The Walking Dead’
TV best bets with series finales of “Bones,” “Duck Dynasty,” “Grimm,” season finale of ‘The Walking Dead’

BONES: L-R: Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz in “The Final Chapter: The End in the End” series finale episode of BONES airing Tuesday, March 28 (9:01-10:00 PM ET/PT) on Fox.
Madonna’s twins get first Barbie dolls, singer posts video
Madonna’s twins get first Barbie dolls, singer posts video

Madonna’s twins got their first Barbie dolls this weekend and the entertainer is sharing it with the world. >> Read more trending news The “Material Girl” posted adorable video of newly adopted twin daughters, Estere and Stelle playing with the dolls. In the short video posted on Instagram, the girls sang the Finger Family song...
Here are the items you'll find on deep discount in April
Here are the items you'll find on deep discount in April

A new month brings a new batch of discounts! Shoppers this month can expect to find savings on lawn and garden equipment, outdoor sports gear, cleaning supplies and other spring essentials. “Established home owners, who make up more than half of all CPG spending this month, are the main focus for the majority of April’s spring sales...
More Stories