I filed my taxes yesterday, so… Dude, where’s my refund? Don’t bogart my bucks! The only thing better than getting a tax refund is knowing when you will get it. Pop over to IRS.gov.
It’s very user-friendly. Yes, I am suggesting you spend some of your free time browsing the Internal Revenue Service website. Do I know how to have fun or what? Don’t harsh my mellow.
Many of us are about to get back the “no-interest loan” we gave Uncle Sam. Generally speaking, that’s what a tax “refund” is. If you don’t have debt to pay down, you might wanna put a fistful of those dollars in your checking account – and fuhgeddaboudit.
Most checking accounts these days are not free unless you jump through hoops. Banks vary, but you usually have to pay at least $10/month unless you have a daily balance of about $1,500. You should not have to pay ANY monthly fees to have a personal checking account. I never have.
People don’t think of it his way, but the money you pay for a checking account is usually after-tax money. You might have to earn $200-$300 at your job to have enough money left after taxes to pay your bank $150 in fees – every year. That adds up!
Make the best of your tax refund. If you already have free checking and no debt, start building that Emergency Fund. EverBank’s Yield Pledge Money Market Account pays 1.40% guaranteed for six months on balances up to $50K. I’ve had it. FDIC & legit. And a pretty sweet rate!
If you’re going to purchase something you need, and someone is willing to pay you tax-free cash for doing so – I say let them!
Check out these cash back cards. Right now, Chase and Citi sweetened the deal with $100 bonuses!
Here’s the scoop: Chase, Citi and Discover have credit cards that never have an annual fee and always give 5% cash back in certain categories. The categories change every three months. We can use these cards to get up to $900 cash back every year – without changing our spending habits. That cash back money is tax free. It adds up!
Instead of using cash, use these cards, get 5% cash back, and then pay off your bill with the cash you were going to spend in the first place.
Click on Chip’s Favorite Credit Card Offers for up-to-date deals, terms, and conditions on these cards and more.. Email me if you have any questions about which card might be right for your situation.
Here are the new categories:
Freedom!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That was my William Wallace impression. Your thoughts?
The Freedom card from Chase can get you a pretty quick $57 in tax free cash. As you may know from reading this post, this quarter’s 5% category for Chase Freedom includes grocery stores. If that card is not your #1 go-to card, get the card out of your sock drawer and pop over to your grocery store’s gift card kiosk. Grab three Visa or MasterCard gift cards and head to the check out. Tell the cashier you want to put $500 on each gift card. She may think she misheard you or that you are a crazy person. Yeah, crazy like a fox who is about to have enough extra cash to graze on some organic, free-range chickens! Pay for the gift cards with your Chase Freedom card.
Just like that, you have maxed out the 5% quarterly spending on your Freedom card. The $1,500 grocery store purchase will result in 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards points hitting your account when your statement drops. Those points can be redeemed for $75 cash, a statement credit on your Chase Freedom bill, or merged into another Ultimate Rewards card tally that you may have on another card (like Sapphire or Ink cards).
As a rule, I don’t use a debit card because it gives direct access to my bank account. If someone stole my debit card info, they could access my cash. A credit card puts a firewall between hoodlums and my money.
I make an exception with the UFB Direct debit card because it gives me 1% cash back on whatever I PAY my credit card company. That means I will earn several hundred dollars a year paying off my credit card bill with this debit card instead of a check. I only use this debit card to pay off my credit card bill and one other thing.
Here’s the scoop. UFB Direct has a special VIP, double-secret, pinky-swear offer. If
When I graduated from college, I got a job and spent every penny I had. Hey, those skis weren’t going to take themselves down that hill. Someone had to buy them, along with a plane ticket, lodging, and lift ticket to get them down the slopes. That person was me.
When tax time came, I wished I had that thousand bucks to pay The Man, man. Turns out the IRS doesn’t care about my Rossignol Make-A-Wish outreach program. The Taxman wants to get paid – now. Lemme tell ya. Nothing makes you feel all grows’d up like explaining to your folks that their college graduate was actually stupid and then striking a deal with them to bail you out.
PayUSATax allows you to “Pay personal and business taxes by credit or debit card”. There is a convenience fee of 1.87% if you use a credit card and $2.79 if you use a debit card. Generally speaking, both of those options are a waste of money. For every $1,000 paid in taxes with a credit card, they take another $18.70 scoop in convenience fees.
But… here are 5 Ways using a card can be a GOOD idea:
Happy Presidents’ Day! I’m dressing up as Teddy Roosevelt. Who are you going to be? Before I head out to all the parties, I’m gathering my tax info to shoot to my accountant. That’s right. I’m a chicken. I’m yella. I have a lot of plates spinning, so I have always used an accountant for my taxes. Boy, do I know how to splurge.
Some of you have a much simpler situation and can do it all yourself. Teddy Roosevelt would admire your rugged individualism. He’s also an easy costume: mustache, round glasses and crazy teeth.
David Cassidy filed for bankruptcy. According to the LA Times article, he has about $10 million in assets and about the same in debt – including $39K in credit cards, $292K in mortgage and $131K in attorney, medical and other bills.
I feel for the guy. When I’m 64, I Think I Owe You certainly ain’t the song I wanna be singing. Too on the nose? How ‘bout: I Woke Up In Debt This Morning, or one of the deeper cuts, Point Me In The Direction of a Bankruptcy. Those are the titles, Weird Al. Go nuts!
Let’s get past the fact that I know lyrics to Partridge Family songs and get to the important stuff. Whatever your profession, the rule is very simple: Spend less than you bring in. Set some aside to splurge. Save some for when you’re no longer in demand.
Are you a drug mule who needs to send money to the Kingpin, ASAP? Do you owe your Coyote some scratch for hitching a ride in the glove box of his ‘72 Ford LTD Country Squire station wagon? Or are you going to visit a friend in a foreign land and simply want some cash to play with once you are there? I say Xoom it, baby!!
You could wire funds to accounts in other countries, but as those who have done it know, that’s kinda pricey. Wells Fargo said that an international wire is $45 plus an exchange rate.
Xoom works just like a wire transfer, but costs as little as $4.99 and has locked-in exchange rates. Check out the sending limits. You can send $2,999 – $9,999 per day, to 33 countries. Click here to open a free account.
Now thru Monday, February 9th, Quicken is 50% off. That’s on Quicken 2015 for Mac or any PC version starting with Deluxe. There is a 60 day money back guarantee. I’ve use it for years.
If you are serious about getting your finances in order, and want tax time to go smoothly, you should start here. If you already use Quicken, upgrade at these lower prices. It’s easy to use and simplifies your finances. Use it for two months. If you no likie, they’ll give you your money back. Click THIS link to get 50% off through Monday.
See my review of Quicken 2014 here. Quicken 2015 is pretty much the same except the PC versions give you a free FICO credit score from Equifax. For convenience, here is that post “I Feel Like Quicken Tonight (2014)”: