When you are part of a working couple, it can be hard to find time to spend together and put the fun back into your life. Unlike when you were dating, it seems that now many things stand in the way of your frivolity. Most boil down to time and money, or the lack thereof. The harder you work, the more money you seem to spend – on your corporate wardrobe, bought lunches and lattes, and conveniences and services to do the things you don’t have time for.
While you may not usually associate a trip to see your accountant with a fun afternoon, it’s time you looked at your tax refund a little differently. While you may consider investing your refund or paying some bills, it’s time to realise that investing in your relationship is just as important.
As long as you are not drowning in debt, it may just be a good time to combine your couple’s tax refund and spend some decadent, indulgent and fun time together. Why not reconnect, relax after a long year, and recharge for the year ahead? Here are some ideas to get you thinking:
1 – Have a massage as a couple
If you’re going to invest in relaxation, why not go all the way and plan a couples’ massage. You and your partner will be worked on separately, and if you book into a fully equipped day spa, you can then make your way to the spa or sauna to have a body scrub or hot stone treatment, with some champagne and chocolate to enjoy at the end.
2 – A night on the town
Clear your schedule for a weekend and plan a night out on the town to enjoy an expensive dinner, good wine and the best champagne. You and your partner can indulge in the ultimate date night with your tax refund and take a late taxi home, or book into a hotel for the night.
3 – Save for a romantic holiday
If your holiday fund doesn’t seem to be getting you any closer to that romantic escape, give it a boost by depositing your tax refund money into it. By topping up your balance you’ll be able to earn more interest income thanks to compounding interest and you may be able to take your dream holiday a few months earlier.
4 – Go on holiday
If you just can’t wait to get away, why not sink your tax refund into a fun couples’ holiday. You don’t have to travel a long way to feel like you’ve been on holiday; you can book into a hotel in the city, or a beach-side shack away from town. If you spend your holiday sleeping in, taking walks together, or enjoying the sand and the sea, your tax refund will become a fun and relaxing way to reconnect with your partner.
5 – Give yourselves a makeover
If you’ve ever watched any of the myriad makeover shows on television, you will have seen the elation, inspiration and the new lease on life the chosen person enjoys for that week. If you and your partner are feeling a bit tired or outdated, refresh your looks and your attitude. Head to the hairdresser and ask for a new colour or style, then hit your favourite department store makeup counter and have your skin assessed for the best type of moisturiser and cleansing regime. The girls can then have their makeup professionally done and purchase their favourite products from the experience.
You and your partner are now ready to hit the change rooms, so look for new clothes that will reflect the current styles and trends while also allowing you to express who you are. Normally when you’re shopping on a budget, you buy for function. Now you can look for clothes, shoes and accessories that are really you.
6 – Upgrade at home
You don’t have to spend your tax refund on yourselves to have fun as a couple. Why not look at adding some fun to your home? What is it that you’ve always wanted your home to have, but could never afford? Do you wish to add a pool or a spa? Do you want to bring a little hotel luxury and romance into your home by buying a waterbed? Do you want your family to be able to have the best movie nights on the block with a professional home theatre system, or do you love to cook for your family and friends with upgraded, modern (and beautiful) appliances?
By looking at your tax refund a little differently, you can spice up your life while still remaining fiscally responsible the rest of the year.
Alban is a regular contributor to personal finance blogs.