We usually get money back, but since I always procrastinate on entering deductible expenses and financial records into a spread sheet, it's usually later in the season that I file. Lately, however I've noticed that even with medical expenses quite high and the usual home deductions (taxes, interest and the like), it's harder for the average (or poorer) person to get an advantage from itemizing. So last year I just took the standard deductions and filed earlier.
This year I'll file as soon as Marge gets her W2 (statement of earnings and withholdings). I also file electronically and usually get the refund deposited to our checking account within ten to fourteen days.
Marge surprised me at Christmas. We had agreed to NOT get gifts for each other - other than stocking stuffer things. But she got me the flip camera that I wanted (and used to make videos of her Christmas decorations). So, I had kind of planned on using the income tax refund this year to get her Wii that she wants (with the fitness, the guitar hero, and the mario racing).
But we received a windfall of $300+ yesterday - an overage on our mortgage escrow account, so guess what we're getting?
So the refund can go toward lumber and materials for the pergola Marge wants over the front deck.