6. Other Ideas
If your bonus has been allocated by this point, that’s perfectly normal. But there are many other things you can do if you’re still flush.
Charity: Not only does this time of year lend itself to the good feelings of donating to a good cause, but you’ll also get a tax deduction with your donation.
Savings Goals: You can also contribute to a long-term savings goal, like your future home or opening your own business. If you haven’t yet started your child’s college education fund, this could be a great way to jumpstart it.
Large Expenses: Look ahead to the next year and think about any large expenses coming in. Is your refrigerator about to die? Perhaps you’ll need dental work. Set aside money for those large, irregular expenses so you don’t stress when they come.
Mortgage: Depending on the size of the bonus, consider paying off your mortgage more quickly. A lump sum contribution could reduce how much interest you pay over time, bring the mortgage down to a level where you can refinance it, or drop it from a jumbo loan to a conforming loan, which would drastically lower your monthly payments.