Money Talks News: Tax Hacks 2014: Best and Worst Uses for a Tax Refund

"Spend it, enjoy it traveling." "I'll catch up on some bills and save it for a rainy day."

According to the IRS, the average tax refund last year was about 2740 bucks. If you're expecting a big check this year, the temptation is going to be great to blow it.

But hey guys, this isn't "found money." This is money that you overpaid to Uncle Sam. Now it's time to make the most of it. Here are some ideas:

First: pay down high-interest debt. No debt? Beef up your emergency fund or boost your retirement savings.

Idea number two: make yourself more productive. Take a class or start a business - leverage your refund into more money.

And a final smart idea: make a charitable donation. You'll help others, and help yourself by creating a deduction for next year's taxes.

If those things aren't quite what you had in mind, at least try not to do something dumb with your refund. Some examples?

Number one: creating more debt. Resist the urge to use that refund as a down payment to borrow for a car or other depreciating asset.

Number two: loaning it to someone who might not pay it back. Keep this windfall to yourself.

And a final foolish way to use your tax refund: frittering it away to temporarily live beyond your means.

Remember, this isn't free money. You worked hard for it.

One final tip: While it's obviously nice to get a refund, it really means you're overpaying your taxes.

You could get a W-4 form, adjust your withholdings and then have a little more money to take home hopefully to save. Want more ideas on what to do with that refund?

I've got a ton of them waiting for you right here at

Just do a search for "Tax Hacks 2014."

For Money Talks News, I'm Stacy Johnson.