Why do leprechauns get to have all of the fun? With St. Patrick's Day on our minds, we wanted to give you some tips on how to make the most of it if you find your very own pot of gold.
Let It Sit for a While
While finding an actual pot of gold is highly unlikely, the truth is many of us will receive some kind of a financial windfall at some point in our lives. For some of us that may mean getting a big bonus at work, inheriting a large sum of money or, fingers crossed, winning the lottery. While it's tempting to spend that money right away, planning before acting can help you maximize the impact of that windfall.
According to the National Endowment for Financial Education, 70 percent of people who receive a financial windfall spend it all within just a few years. Patience is a virtue and it can help you take the time you need to find the smartest way to spend your newfound income so you don't end up like that 70 percent.
Attract More Gold
Who wouldn't love their money to duplicate on its own? One option to consider for your personal pots of gold is to invest it. That could mean maxing out your individual retirement account contributions, putting it into a brokerage account or, if you're eligible, putting the money into a health savings account.
No matter which option you choose, taking income you don't need and putting it towards your retirement can help you to be better prepared for the retirement lifestyle you've been dreaming of.
Talk to a Professional
This may also be a great time to invest in the advice of a financial adviser, especially if that advisor is tax and planning savvy. With large sums of money can come large amounts of tax owed and in order to keep more of your money, a financial adviser can be of great benefit.
Without having that expertise on your side, you could miss out on planning opportunities and could empty your pot of gold quicker than you'd like to. Whether it's from spending more than you realize, being too risky with your investments or paying too much in taxes, going it alone could mean you miss out on the fullest benefit possible from your financial windfall.
No matter what you do, we suggest you use your newfound income in a way that reflects your values and puts you another step closer to your goals. Without these items as the backbone, you may end up regretting the way you put your financial jackpot to use. By taking the time to develop a strategy and enlisting the help of knowledgeable professionals, you can make the most of your pot of gold and be more confident in your financial future.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.
This article was originally published on March 16, 2019 in the Pioneer Press.
Peg Chromy Webb has specialized in financial consulting for more than 30 years and is a popular co-host of the “Your Money” Radio Show. She is passionate about financial education and shares her expertise on career-building and financial literacy through various charitable endeavors.