What to do with Tax Return Money

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I know its our money.  We earned it and let the government borrow it.  But it still felt really great to get our tax returns back.  We didn’t spend it on a big vacation (although I wish we could have.)  We didn’t spend it on a bunch of new grown-up toys (read electronics.)  We didn’t even invest it in stocks or stash it away in a savings account.
Instead, we used it to pay off 83% of our credit card debt.  And it feels great.  Only 17% to go, and then our only debt will be our car payments.  I’m not sure if I feel the need to pay off our cars at the speed of light, though.  We planned for our car payments.  We knew we’d be paying x amount every month.  But no one plans to carry a balance on a credit card.  I have no idea what our goal should be to pay that other 17% off.  Maybe four months.  Maybe.  I’m very into setting goals, but I’m also very into being realistic about them.  I don’t like setting myself up for failure.  This may require sitting down and doing some long math.
What did you/will you do with your tax return money?  (If you’re getting any back.)
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11 thoughts on “What to do with Tax Return Money

  1. nicoleandmaggie

    That’s awesome! 83% in one blow!

    I don’t know if we’ll be getting any back or not (we tried to do them last weekend, but etrade says it won’t have some forms we need until Feb 15). First stop: estimated taxes for next year. After that we’ll re-evaluate based on the size. Probably either a Roth IRA or mortgage pre-payment, but who knows.

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  2. femmefrugality

    Michelle and Cassie–it’s good to know we’re not alone!
    @NicoleandMaggie- Thank you! That’s always frustrating…we couldn’t get our city taxes done until this weekend, but we came up even on those so I wasn’t too upset. When I was a contractor I always put some towards the next year. I love the retirement account and mortgage ideas, too! Big plans, big plans 🙂

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  3. femmefrugality

    youngandthrifty–It completely is. This year we’re making our withholdings higher than they should be so next spring can be glorious.
    Miss T-Investing and saving is one of the best things to do with it. Maybe I’ll catch up to you soon!

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  4. Dmarie

    oh, wow, 83% gone in one fell swoop. gotta love that! I guess ours goes into savings each year. been a long time since we thought of that check as fun money. more age than wisdom tho’, as we’ve already acquired about all of the junk we want/need. 😉

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