Many Iowans are talking about how to spend the 600-dollar economic stimulus checks they’ll soon be getting from the federal government, but one financial advisor says to use common sense before using your plastic.
West Des Moines C-P-A Jeff Strawhacker says most of his clients are expecting the checks in a few weeks. "We have a large percentage," he says. "We have actually filed some returns this year for senior citizens, who ordinarily would not need to file, just to get those rebate checks," Strawhacker says.
Many Iowa couples who file jointly will get a 12-hundred dollar check and there’ll be a temptation to look at big-screen T-Vs or get-away vacations, part of Uncle Sam’s plan to jump-start the economy. Instead of blowing the money, he suggests more prudent, financially-savvy spending plans for Iowans.
Strawhacker says: "I think they have a lot of options on what to do with those rebate checks. One, obviously, they can pay down debt, but two, they can also take a look and do some more on the savings end of things, contribute more to an IRA or some other type of retirement program and make that money work for them in the long term."
He remains a bit skeptical about whether the economy is going to see a significant bounce from the rebate checks. Strawhacker says there were probably better options to stimulate the economy but he acknowledges it’s hoped the "one-shot-deal" will spur sales, spur job growth and get people out and spending money. He says, "The checks are scheduled to start going out in mid-May so probably within the next 60 to 90 days, we should start to see some results."