From Ash Cash, personal finance expert, speaker and bestselling author.*
So, you may have heard that there was a recent $2 trillion stimulus package that was approved by congress which will help many Americans stay or get back on their feet, as well as stimulate the economy.
While we know each individual will have different financial needs, there are many questions as to who qualifies and what it takes for you to receive your stimulus package, so I wanted to give you some of the quick guidelines;
If you are single and you make $75,000 or less, you qualify for the full amount of $1,200.
Married couples who have no children, and earn $150,000 or less will receive a total of $2,400 and for every qualified child under the age of 16 you will get another $500.
If you make more than the above mentioned then you will see the amount that you receive be decreased; so for instance, if you are single and earn $99,000, or married, with no children, and earn, $198,000 then the payment will be adjusted.
Anything above that you may be ineligible to receive a check. First and foremost, starting a family is one of the best things that has ever happened to me in my life and anyone who has experienced being a parent will tell you how much joy parenting really is—up to a certain point. The truth of the matter is that children are blessings and can change your life for the better, but unfortunately they can also change your wallet in the opposite direction if you aren’t properly prepared.
There are situations in which certain people will be ineligible;
For instance, if you are a college aged child who was claimed as a dependent on your parent’s tax returns, then you won't receive a check for the most part. There really isn't anything you have to do to receive payment. If the IRS has your bank information from when you filed your taxes previously, then the money will be transferred to you via direct deposit.
So what should you do with your stimulus check? Here are a few tips:
1. Start (or contribute more to) a financial freedom fund. It is a good practice to have at least six to eight months’ worth of expenses in a high yield savings account as an emergency fund or, as I like to call it, a financial freedom fund. Use your stimulus check as an opportunity to either start your own financial freedom fund or put more into it. Having this money in an account will help you weather any financial storm this pandemic may continue to cause.
2. Put money aside for a big purchase. Prior to these uncertain times many of us would love to buy a new car, fancy furniture, trendy electronics or upgrade our wardrobe, but now these things are probably not a priority. This doesn’t mean you should throw your wants away; in fact this may be the time to set aside money to make your big purchase when the time is right.
3. Start investing in the markets. With the ups and downs in the market, now may be the time you take a shot at it. Investing money while the markets are down can give you some good returns in the long run and diversify assets to mitigate risk. Instead of putting all of your eggs in one basket, spread them out to increase your chance of reaching true financial freedom. My only disclaimer is to make sure that you consult with a professional financial advisor before you jump in.
4. Invest in yourself. Author Robin S. Sharma said, “Investing in yourself is the best investment you will ever make. It will not only improve your life, it will improve the lives of all those around you.” Take this opportunity to invest in a certificate program, buy some books, hire a coach, or take an exciting online course. Invest in yourself and allow your value to go up in the long term.
5. Give to charity. Not only is giving to a good cause a noble thing to do, it can also help increase your blessings. There is a universal law that says, “The more you, give the more you get.” If you are in the financial position, this stimulus check may be a way to use a blessing to be a blessing to others.
*The opinions/views expressed by Ash Cash are not considered opinions/views of BMTX, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of BM Technologies, Inc. BMTX is not a financial advisor and individuals are urged to obtain and consult their own financial advisors.