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A single mom used her tax refund to pay her rent—for the entire year

CNBC logo CNBC 25/02/2017 Kathleen Elkins
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When Christina Knaack received a $5,600 tax refund, she didn't head to the mall or book a trip to the Caribbean. The South Carolina-based single mom of two kids used it to pay her rent … for the entire year.

"Instead of buying my kids the latest Jordans or fancy electronics I paid my rent for the YEAR," Knaack writes on Facebook. "I'm a single mom and I do it all by myself on a minimum wage job. I know that a roof over my kids head is what's important."

Since Knaack uploaded the picture of her rent receipt on Feb. 22, the post has gone viral and racked up more than 320,000 Facebook "reactions." 

"You see too many posts now saying, 'Oh I got my kid the latest Jordans.' Or, "Look, my 7-year-old has an iPhone 7,'" Knaack says on FOX Carolina. "People lose sight of what's important."

Now that Knaack's rent is covered, "I don't have to worry about my kids saying, 'Mommy, I need this,' and I can't get it because I'm still trying to debate if I can pay my light bill or if I can pay my rent," she tells FOX.

Plus, she now has an extra $450 a month (the cost of her rent), which she plans to spend on fun activities with her kids.

If you're one of the millions expecting a tax refund this year, consider using it to improve your financial situation, whether that means chipping away at your rent or mortgage like Knaack, funding your retirement accounts or investing in your career.

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