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With a potential government shutdown looming, there’s a lot at stake — including that fat tax refund you’ve probably been anxiously awaiting.
A shutdown could go down on Saturday if the federal government runs out of money, affecting everything from the processing and closing of mortgages, National Parks shuttering their (metaphorical) doors, and yes, your wallet. A two-week government shutdown would delay nearly $8 billion in tax refunds for roughly 2.5 million families, according to an estimate from The Center for American Progress. Wonder if you may be affected? Try the IRS’ Where’s my refund? tool to see where your return is in the process.
The scariest part of this whole scenario? Twenty-nine percent of people are planning to use their tax refund on necessities this year, according to a Bankrate survey. If the government shuts down and refunds are delayed, those people might start stressing just a little bit, because bounced checks are no Bueno.
You have better things to worry about—like which Insta filter to use and whether Rachel will actually find true love on “The Bachelorette”–so next year, give yourself one less thing to stress over. You don’t have to wait on decisions to be made on Capitol Hill (which is often a hot mess, TBH), to take control of your finances. Adjust your withholding appropriately so you don’t get a refund next year.
Why? Besides the obvious risk of your refund being superdelayed, your money is better in your hands than Uncle Sam’s.
Let’s say you adjust your withholding and get an extra $50 per biweekly paycheck; that adds up to $1,300 per year extra going toward your investments! Earn that compounding interest and make your money work for you.