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What should I do with my tax refund?

Well, I’m only getting a refund of $1,300, but that’s still a decent amount of money. So, what should I do with it? Should I put it all towards my debt? Put it in my emergency fund, or stick it all in my condo down payment fund? Or split it up a few ways?

Right now, I’m leaning towards getting my emergency fund up above $1,000, so I can put $500 towards that, which will leave me $800 to go towards my debt. Is that a reasonable thing to do? It’d be nice to get my condo down payment fund going though …

The old me would have gone out and spent it on some hot new work outfits from Jacob, or some of the cute designer boutiques around town. But not anymore. Any excess money I have will go towards something useful like my debt, or my savings. Still, I’m so tempted to go shopping. I really want to get a professional black suit for interviews, etc. I don’t need one at the moment, but I know it’s one of the essential things a professional woman has to have. But I can’t let myself fall back into my old habits! If I let myself slip now when I’m weak, then in the future I’ll look back to this moment and realize I have no will power. I need to stand up for my money and protect it from my evil self!

Saving money to me is kinda like running a race; if you let yourself stop and walk (spend money), you’ll find it nearly impossible to get the motivation to run in the race again, because you’ve experienced the feeling of rest, and it’s not straining you. Walking and resting just feels nice. So the key is to always keep running – even if you have to slow it down to a jog … as long as you never stop, you’ll always feel motivated to run. It’s an internal battle, and a test of how strong your mind really is. And since I’m so competitive, it’s like I’m in a battle with my mind versus my body. I can’t let myself down and lose this war! At least, that’s how I motivate myself every day on that darn treadmill! :)

Anyway, I kinda went off on a tangent there. Bottom line is: my refund is not going into any cash register as long as I’m alive … I just have to figure out what the heck to do with it now!

I finally know my credit score

Well I decided to take the plunge and check out my credit score on Equifax. Since I’m looking to buy property in the next year, I want to be able to give myself enough time to fix any errors I find on my report, as well as boost my score. It’s not as bad as I thought it was going to be, but it’s also not that great either. Okay, so it’s 727. There, I said it. It’s out in the open for the whole blogging world to see. Not that a lot of people read this blog, but you know what I mean. Anyway, I’ve noticed some errors in my report … a few accounts that have been paid off, some closed accounts that still say they’re open. I’ll have to find my documentation and send it in so I can get that junk off. I think that once I finish paying off my student loans, and not apply for anymore credit, I’ll be fine. 727 isn’t bad, is it? I mean, I know it’s not great, but it’s not exactly a double digit number.

But as for my accounts that have been paid off and I don’t use anymore, should I close them? One of them is a joint account that my dad helped me set up, and I really want to close that one off since I haven’t even used it in like 3 years. But it’s also my oldest account, so I’m not sure. I think I’m going to spend some time today researching up on credit scores, because I don’t want to do anything that could affect my score in a negative way.

In other news, I’m finally going to see my accountant on Friday to file my taxes. I’m hoping that since I have a bunch of unused education credits from previous years, and I’m writing off a bunch of business expenses, that I get a good sized refund. I should, since I was still in school last year, but you never know!

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