- Days left
No, this isn't one of those dumb headlines that's a lie and just meant to get you to read. It's actually true. Every year you wait for that nice fat tax refund from the government, right? Well why wait, when you can have that money in your hand now? Start filling your piggy bank right away instead of waiting until April.

If you're getting a big refund each year, you're having too much money withheld from your paycheck. So the government is taking extra money from you every two weeks, using it for whatever it wants, and giving it back to you in April without paying you any interest. How much sense does that make? Why are you letting the government use your money for free all year?

You need to reduce your withholding, and that's easy. All you have to do is go to your payroll department and ask to fill out a new W-4. You should also ask how many "withholding allowances" you're currently claiming. (This is easy for them to find out and they shouldn't have any objection to telling you.)

The more allowances you claim, the less money is withheld from each check. So you want to increase that number in order to take home more pay each week. Try it out and see how you like it. This isn't a permanent thing... if you need to change your allowances in the future, you can. Your employer cannot stop you.

Just remember that if you do this, you won't be getting that big refund in April. But if you're getting more money each paycheck, why not set up an automatic savings plan and have $50 or $100 automatically set aside into a savings account for you? Then you can start building an emergency fund and earn interest on your money at the same time. See? You really don't have to wait for your refund!

Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, MBA, CFE performs fraud examinations and financial investigations for her company Sequence Inc. Forensic Accounting, and is the author of Essentials of Corporate Fraud.

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Intro to different retirement accounts

What does it mean to have a 401(k)? IRA?

View Course »

How to Avoid Financial Scams

Avoid getting duped by financial scams.

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Incentive Stock Options

Some employers use Incentive Stock Options (ISOs) as a way to attract and retain employees. While ISOs can offer a valuable opportunity to participate in your company's growth and profits, there are tax implications you should be aware of. We'll help you understand ISOs and fill you in on important timetables that affect your tax liability, so you can optimize the value of your ISOs.

What is a 1098-E: Student Loan Interest

If you're currently paying off a student loan, you may get Form 1098-E in the mail from each of your lenders. Your lenders have to report how much interest you pay annually. Student loan interest can be deductible on federal tax returns, but receiving a 1098-E doesn't always mean you're eligible to take the deduction.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum