Income Tax Survey: Most Refunds Going to Bills, Savings

Every April 15, people around the country rush to file their annual income tax returns. For many people, those returns lead to tax refunds. And for many businesses, those refunds lead to extra sales. So what types of things are people most likely to spend their income tax refunds on this year? And do all those tax season special promotions have any impact on people’s buying decisions?

income tax

Income Taxes

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 35% of respondents said they have already received their tax refunds for 2014. 13% said they still expect to receive a tax refund. 12% said they have to pay additional taxes for 2014. 20% said they don’t owe or expect any kind of refund. And another 20% were unsure or would rather not say.

Refund Purchases

In general, 59% of respondents said they plan to use their tax refunds to pay bills or pay off debt. 27% plan to save at least some of it. 8% plan to invest it. 18% plan to purchase some essentials with their tax refund money. Just 8% plan to spend their tax refunds on fun items. And 5% were still undecided.

More specifically, 25% of respondents plan to buy home items with their tax refunds. 22% plan to buy some clothing or accessories. 15% are likely to buy some electronics. 12% plan to use the money for travelling. Another 11% will spend it on entertainment. 7% plan to buy hobby items. And 18% have other purchases in mind, such as automotive items or repairs and health related purchases.

Tax Season Sales

Around this time of year, there are plenty of businesses trying to lure people into spending their tax refund money with them. However, 54% of respondents said that tax season sales or special promotions are unlikely to have any impact on their buying decisions. Just 25% said such promotions are likely to impact their buying behavior. And 21% were neutral.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: Tax Refund – Written on a calculator from Flickr

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on April 14 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.