I used my family’s $ 3,900 stimulus payment to buy some breathing room


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  • I am a married father of three, and based on my family’s income, we received a total of $ 3,900 in incentive payments under the CARES Act.
  • I would recommend anyone use this money to pay off debts or invest in the future.
  • Or do what I did: pay off all credit cards and keep the rest of the cash on hand in case your income is at risk over the next few weeks and months.
  • Read more about personal financial services »

When the COVID-19 crisis landed in the United States, Americans faced an unprecedented series of layoffs and job losses from coast to coast. To help people keep food on the table and pay the bills, the government has issued one of the largest stimulus packages in history.

According to the CARES law, Single taxpayers with income up to $ 75,000 and married taxpayers with income up to $ 150,000 are eligible for the full amount. Families receive an additional $ 500 per child, so a couple with no dependent children would be eligible for a payment of $ 2,400, and a family of four would receive $ 3,400. If you filed your 2018 or 2019 taxes or are receiving social security benefits, you should automatically receive a direct deposit or check.

Last November, I became the proud father of three children. Based on my family’s income and our children we received a payment of 3,900 USD.

I’ve closed the money in case the work dries up

I’m used to sending IRS payments at least four times a year, plus automatic wage deductions. It was nice to see the IRS give me money for a change.

I cleared my family’s 2019 taxes in February and had the IRS accept them on February 28th. At that point we only had a clue of what was to come. But thanks to my early tax settlement, I unwittingly took care of whatever it took to get my full payment. The Payment has arrived on my account by the IRS on April 15, 2020.

When my direct deposit arrived the first thing I did was zero all of my credit card balances. I always pay off my credit cards in full every month to avoid interest. These payouts consumed approximately $ 900 of the total.

As I looked at the $ 3,000 that was left, I considered putting the money into savings. I thought about investing it in longer term investments or starting funding my Roth IRA early on. But in the end I didn’t do any of these things. I’ve decided to keep the $ 3,000 on my checking account As we ride the uncertainty ahead

As someone who works online at home, I have been fortunate to avoid the huge impact of our current situation. But some customers wrote to cut the volume. You cut off your freelancers completely. There is always a risk of losing more work in the months ahead, so I decided to keep the money in the bank in case my income worsens.

I would advise anyone else to save, invest, or pay off debts

If you’ve just received your payment, or expect it to arrive in the near futureYou have several options as to what you want to do with the money.

Families who have lost their income or are at great risk of losing their jobs should keep the money in an emergency fund. While

High yield savings accounts
no longer paying the same interest as you did at the beginning of the year, they provide a safe place for your cash and at the same time take away the temptation to spend it.

If you have any debts, especially high-yield debt, if you are considering channeling the money into your debt payments. For example, if you settle credit card balances, you will save money on interest every month.

Financially stable households can use the money in the longer term. You can invest or invest the money in an IRA or HSA account so it can grow over time. Also, if you’re feeling charitable, you can try to help redistribute the money by supporting local businesses.

As with all financial decisions, how you spend your money is entirely up to you. For my family, the best use of $ 3,900 was to add a little extra cushion to our checking account. A little more air to breathe in a stressful time was very welcome.


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