Wednesday, April 6, 2011

5 Smart Ways to Blow Your Tax Refund

In the past few years people have used their tax refunds for savings or to pay off debt. The average tax refund this year is $3,164 "Despite the difficult unemployment situation across the country, Americans receiving a tax refund this year seem eager to plow this money back into the economy," said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. "With sales momentum continuing to build, NRF is becoming more bullish about the economic recovery." And, for those who plan to spend it, economists have made some suggestions for five good ways that will avoid being stuck with a piece of technology that will be obsolete by Christmas.

  1. For $3,000 you can make a change in your home that adds more resale value than expensive kitchen or bath remodels. “According to Remodeling Magazine’s latest Cost vs. Value Report, the only home improvement that gives a homeowner back his or her entire investment in resale value is swapping out existing front, back and side doors with steel doors. This may challenge your aesthetic sense and seem minor at best, but the average $1,218 spent swapping out an old door and jambs with a 20-gauge steel door with new casings and lock set consistently adds $1,243 (or 102% of its cost) in resale value.”

  2. If you have the vacation time, use the $3,000 to travel before fare go up even more. This can help unload stress and make memories.

  3. A new scooter to drive to work will get you great gas mileage. The new Vespa LX 50 gets 95-100 miles per gallon and costs right under $3,000.

  4. A new bed. Mattresses need to be replaced every eight years. A bed is something you use between 2,400 and 3,000 hours a year.

  5. A collectable, like comic books. “Some obvious choices as the Amazing Fantasy No. 15 that features the origins of Spider-Man sell for $150,000 to $300,000 and Action Comics No. 1 featuring the first appearance of Superman sells for upward of $1.5 million. If you're a big Spider-Man fan from way back, however, an Amazing Spider-Man No. 1 can still be had on eBay for around $3,000, but more intriguing prospects such as Amazing Spider-Man No. 122 (the death of the Green Goblin) or Amazing Spider-Man No. 49 (the first appearance of the Vulture) fetch roughly the same amount.”

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