Print

USE THE IRS DIRECT DEPOSIT OPTION

Direct deposit is a safer and quicker way to receive your tax refund. Working with WCFCU, the IRS will transmit your refund directly to your credit union account. Our routing number, 211288970, and your account number from your statement are all you need. Simply see the instructions on your U.S. Individual Income Tax Return form, and fill in lines 74b, c, and d.

Are you among the nearly 80{a16c29276902c0134dc3724dc6f6a60124a484baf737123e94c02cf5a4efbdc5} of tax filers who get a refund? If so, it may be a nice chunk of change—an average of $3,120.

Since windfalls of this size don’t land every day, it’s wise to plan ahead on how you’ll make the most of it. For example, consider these ways a well-directed tax refund might improve your family’s financial well-being:

1. Pay down debt.

Which of your bills have the highest interest rate? By applying your refund to pay them off—or at least make a big dent in the balance due—you might free up enough money each month to pay for a child’s music lessons, join a gym, or save for a terrific vacation.

2. Buy something vital that you’ve been putting off.

Sometimes good investments are deferred because they’re not urgent. Dental work? A new living room sofa? Roof repair? Now could be the right time to act.money bag

3. Use it as seed money for an important goal.

For example, you could…

  • Start (or add to) an emergency fund
  • Open a Coverdell Education Savings Account for a young child
  • Start a Roth IRA for an older child who had a summer job
  • Begin a fund for fall home renovations

4. Beef up your retirement savings.

You can still open a 2016 Traditional IRA or Roth IRA up to April 15, 2017. Generally, you can contribute up to $5,500 per year. If you don’t want the risk of investing, see us to get started with an IRA account or certificate of deposit.

5. Buy more protection.

houseIf your homeowners insurance doesn’t provide adequate flood coverage, ask for an upgrade. In these litigious days, you may also need a personal liability umbrella policy, which provides $1 million in coverage more than your existing auto and home policies. Tired of power outages leaving you in the dark? Consider buying a generator.

6. Give to others.

You might help a relative in need or donate to a library, food bank, or animal shelter. This use of your refund could make a huge difference to the recipient and pay long-term emotional rewards to you.

7. Can’t decide? Divide your refund into equal thirds to spend, save, and share.

On average, this would mean $1,040 to spend, $1,040 to save, and $1,040 to share with others.

To be honest, we think giving Uncle Sam free use of your money isn’t the best way to save. A better alternative: Reduce your tax withholding by the amount you overpaid, which will then plump up your paycheck. Have this extra income automatically transferred each pay period into a WCFCU savings account. By tax time next year, you’ll have the stockpile of savings you were counting on—and you’ll have earned interest on it, too.

Source of refund statistics:
Maurie Backman, “Here’s What the Average American’s Tax Refund Looks Like,” Fool.com, 11/21/16 (https://www.fool.com/retirement/2016/11/21/heres-what-the-average-americans-tax-refund-looks.aspx)