Tax & Savings Survey


March 22, 2018 - Banking Consumer Insights DC, DE, MD, VA Florida Maine New England New Jersey, New York and PA North and South Carolina

The silver lining to tax season often comes in the form of receiving a return from the government. According to, the average tax refund is $3,120. Even though it's your own money, it can feel like found cash, so people have different ideas for how to spend it.

TD Bank asked people who are expecting a refund what they plan to do with the money – overwhelmingly, they chose to use the funds towards bills or to pay down debt, rather than spend it on a new item or experience, put it towards a major purchase, invest, or fund a savings account.


Here are some other things we found:

Preferred method of handling tax refund:

  • Direct deposit to a checking account (56%)
  • Receive a paper check, cash it (17%)
  • Receive a paper check, deposit to a checking account (11%)

Also of note:

  • More than 1 in 4 respondents (26%) said if they could give their younger selves advice, it would be to use their tax refund to pay down debt. Funding a savings account was a close second at 23%
  • 70% of respondents 55 and over receive their refund through automated deposit to a checking account, compared with those aged 35-54 (57%) and those 18-34 (43%)

For more information, or to request a copy of the full survey results, please contact Lisa Sawicki,

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