It’s that time again!! Tax time, that is! As people everywhere are grumbling about the hefty task of filing taxes, there are a few of us that are in a position to get a nice sized tax refund check from the IRS. While the hopes of getting caught up on bills, buying a new car or house, or taking that much needed vacation become reality and fill the minds of many, are we making the best use of our funds? We spoke with several of Charlotte’s leading professionals in the finance industry, including mortgage brokers, tax and financial advisors and accountants, to answer that very questions, and here’s what we found...
According to Charlotte’s leading financial professionals, here are some ways you may want to consider allocating your money:
1. Emergency Fund: Whether you are bulking up your existing emergency fund or starting a brand new one, this is top of the list for all financial advisors. Life happens! Be prepared for unforeseen circumstances could be the difference between staying above water and drowning in a growing pile of debt.
2. Debt Payoff: We aren’t talking about any and all debt though! It seems to be the consensus that you should focus on outstanding credit cards and revolving debt.
3. Invest In Something With ROI: Start your own scalable business, or purchase one already existing! Also, we can’t count out the stock market, municipal bonds, and CDs, all ways to allow your money to work for you!
4. Purchase Home/Invest in Real Estate: Put aside the money for a down payment for your first home, or an investment property.
5. Make Payment on Large Ticket Bill: This can be making an annual payment towards protective services, such as life and auto insurance; or getting ahead on a large monthly bill that makes you sweat, like rent/mortgage or car note.
5. Credit Repair; if needed: use a professional (important) to work on your credit profile. Credit controls cash flow. With good credit you save on ridiculous interest rates and put yourself in a great position to makes moves towards financial independence.
6. Spend on Yourself!: YOU are an investment! Make sure you are taking the time out for self-care. Mental health is vital, especially when working hard and making sacrifices that don’t show rewards immediately. This will keep you fresh and rejuvenated moving forward. This could mean visiting a therapist, enjoying a deep tissue massage, or, yes, taking that much needed vacation!
Regardless of how you decided to allocate your money, make sure you have a plan. Most importantly, speak to a financial advisor or professional to see where you can actually maximize your efforts. There’s no wrong answer to this question, unless of course your answer doesn’t create a better position for you, your family or future financial security.
Special thanks goes to those individuals that contributed to this post: Candace Millner, Eleazar Graham, Tomeka Purcell, Tony Proctor, Greg Cooley, Vincio Chavez, Brandie Jackson, and Cearra Friday.