Take the money and spend it in eco-friendly ways that will help the earth. Here are some options:
- Insulate your house: Figure out if your home can improve on insulation with either a paid inspection by a professional energy auditor or one of your own. The US Department of Energy website has good tips on DIY home inspections. Save energy and money by installing what works best for your house, from installing windows and doors that fit better to plugging and caulking cracks and holes. Be sure to do your research online first, before attempting to make these changes on your own.
- Green up your car: Your vehicle is usually the second-biggest investment in your life after a house, so spend some of the cash to maintain it, give it a tune-up, and clean air filters. If your car is at its optimum performance, then it will be less polluting and more fuel-efficient.
- Solar energy: Replace some of your products with items that can be powered by solar energy, such as radios, rechargeable batteries, flashlights, and even laptop chargers.
Some of these expenditures will give you great benefits come tax day.