Financial Planner Suggests Using Stimulus Check To Reduce Stress In Your Life

A financial planner suggests using the money to reduce stress in your life. KDKA's Paul Martino has more.

Video Transcript

KYM GABLE: 85% of Americans have received or are about to receive their COVID relief checks, and it could be a lot of money. For example, a family of four could receive $5,600.

STACY SMITH: So what should you do with that money? Paul Martino has advice from a financial planner. It is New at 6:30.

PAUL MARTINO: The expert I spoke with says remember this, it's a relief check, not a stimulus check. Your first priority should be your family and your bills.

Over $400 billion in checks have been either sent or are on the way. What are you going to do with yours?

- I would put it into savings and/or invest it, right? That's the best thing to do with it.

PAUL MARTINO: Sounds like a good idea, but financial planner Bob Feldman says there might be a better use for the windfall.

BOB FELDMAN: When you get a check like this, you should be looking at what is keeping you awake at night.

PAUL MARTINO: Feldman suggests you use the money to reduce stress in your life.

BOB FELDMAN: What are the things that you need to deal with most? Is it a car loan? Is it food for your family? Is it rent? Whatever that may. Be is it a credit card that's out of control?

PAUL MARTINO: While parking the money in your savings sounds like a good idea, you may be better off trimming your debt.

BOB FELDMAN: Most people today, I think, are sitting there with debt. And to put money into a savings account, which is earning you basically nothing when you have a 20-something % credit card out there makes no sense at all.

PAUL MARTINO: Here's one more thing to consider. Don't be afraid to spend some money on yourself.

BOB FELDMAN: If you need to do certain things that you have been not doing, like take your kids to Kennywood park, or to do other things which give you enjoyment, I think that that's really, really important.

PAUL MARTINO: Bottom line, these are checks meant to help you. Feldman says take the help. I'm Paul Martino, KDKA News.