Tag Archives: saving

How Your Tax Refund Can Help Your Financial Goals

Average tax refund last year: $2,700Nobody likes taxes. Have you seen the new commercial for tax software or tax preparers? They make it sound all fun and easy…like some kind of party: ”You did so much crazy, awesome stuff. So, we’re pretty sure you can answer questions about those things and file your taxes on your own.” Another claims: “Get Your Billion Back!”

Well, for one thing, you won’t get a billion dollars back, and did you really do some crazy, awesome stuff?

Maybe you used to…and are thankful every day that phones with cameras and social media did not exist back then…but last year? Not so much.

Worrying about taxes is an adult thing, and definitely not a party. Taxes are that dreadful thing that rears its ugly head. Every. Single. Year.

Some people can’t wait to get that tax refund. In fact, many count on it. According to a Fidelity survey, most Americans (75% of you) will get a refund…to the tune of $2,700 (See? Definitely not a billion dollars).

The good news is that most people say they will save or pay down debt with their tax refund.

Wait…save it? Pay off some debt? Psshhh…that’s not fun at all. Sounds like something Sandra Dee would do.

In fact, 33% said they intend to pay off debts and 46% plan to use the money for some kind of savings (retirement, college, etc). Such a responsible bunch…you know the type…Teacher’s pet. Goody-two shoes. Responsible citizen.

Yes, people want to be responsible financially…no one wants to be debt. These statistics are the light at the end of the tunnel. Individuals and families want control of their financial situation. They want financial health.

Start the ball rolling with your tax refund. According to creditcard.com, the average credit card debt per U.S. adult is $4,878. With your $2,700, you could cut away good chunk of that debt…and be on your way to that billion dollars…all on your own.

New Year’s Resolutions Focus on Finances

The ball has dropped, the party hats worn, and the champagne bottle is empty. Bid farewell to 2013, and wave hello to 2014.

With the new year comes a fresh start. A new page. New resolutions.

According to a survey by GoBanking.com, saving money and paying down debt were the most popular financially related New Year’s resolutions. And according to a Dec. 30 Forbes post, the resolution to pay down debt has tripled since 2010.

Go Banking Top Financial Goals
What’s interesting is that when the responses are broken down by income level, both the lowest income bracket ($0-$24,000) and one of the highest ($100,000-$149,000) reported the highest response rate to both saving money and paying down debt.

This reveals that financial issues affect all income levels, and not just those on the lower end of the income ladder.

Saving Money
The 52 Week Money Challenge seems to be a popular and simple way to save money over a year. Each week, put away the designated amount of money. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!
52 Week Challendge
Paying Down Debt
To jump-start your effort to pay down debt, try paying just $20 more on your credit card bills, loan payments or medical bills. You will be amazed at how fast this little bit adds up.

For example, if you owe $3,300 on a credit card at a 14.96% interest rate, it will take almost 20 YEARS to pay off the debt if you only pay the minimum balance. And it will cost you $7,600! That’s more than double the amount of the debt. By paying just $20 more than the minimum amount, you pay off that card in four and half years, plus you will save about $3,000 in interest fees.