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Should You Buy a New Fill-In-the-Blank With Your Tax Refund Now or Later? A Finance Expert Explains

by Jeanine Asencio 12:10 PM, April 25, 2017

Aired August 4, 2017

You know that happy dance sort of feeling you get whenever you get a tax refund?

That throw your arms in the air and wave ‘em around like you just don’t care feeling?

Well, sometimes that feeling leads to spending -- which is okay, but to an extent.

“If you get a tax refund, [you should] put about 90% of it toward emergency savings, paying off credit card debt, and getting to the future,” says financial expert Alexa Von Tobel.

“Then I always say take a little and do something for yourself, because it means you’re going to end up being better with finances if you don’t feel deprived. So yes, you can spend money on these things!”

READ: How to Use Your Tax Refund to Achieve Financial Stability

Part of financial success is knowing how (and when!) to spend your hard-earned dough wisely. Let’s say you’ve had your eye a shiny new pair of kicks. Did you know that they’re actually cheaper during certain months of the year?

Alexa has the scoop on whether or not you should buy things this spring or wait until later so you can keep more of that happy dance refund in your wallet where it belongs.

NOW: Sneakers
It’s April and that means swimsuit season is right around the corner -- what that also means is lots of folks are getting some fresh air and exercise to get in shape for summertime.

“Instead of waiting until summer to discount them, retailers have caught on and they discount them right now because they want to get you out there exercising,” says Alexa.

LATER: Large Appliances
Big ticket appliances like ovens and refrigerators tend to go on sale around the 4th of July. Why?

“They’re heavy, expensive and people aren’t cooking indoors,” says Alexa.

NOW: Vacuum Cleaner
It’s spring cleaning season so they tend to have major discounts on vacuums.

“Retailers are also spring cleaning their stores so they’re getting the old models out so they can get the new models in,” says Alexa.

READ: A Whole New Way to Think About Saving Money That’s Pure Genius

NOW: Gardening Essentials
The weather’s nice, the birds are singing, the flowers are blooming and everyone’s out gardening. Now is the time to buy!

But beware of the next section…

LATER: Plants, Trees + Shrubs
These do NOT go on sale now -- and they can be really expensive!

“It’s a captive audience! You have to plant them now, so you’re going to pay anything you have to,” says Rach.

Alexa says the best time to buy these is during the summer.

LATER: Paint
Why is paint cheaper in the summer? Because nobody wants to paint during the summer. (Preach!)

“The big retailers want to get the paint out of their stores because nobody’s buying it and they end up having a stockpile,” says Alexa. “So supply and demand, this is one of the one’s they want to get out of there.”

WATCH: Tax Day 101: Why You Shouldn’t Be Getting a Refund