Got a raise? 5 ways to make the most of it.

While a bump in pay might tempt you to loosen up your spending, it is better to think strategically

Businessman with briefcase of money running up ascending bar graph
"Over time, that difference in income could provide a boost to your lifestyle or be put toward other financial goals."
(Image credit: Malte Mueller / Getty Images)

Congratulations, you got a raise! Now, what should you do with it? While a bump in pay — especially a sizable one — might tempt you to loosen up your spending a little, it is better to think strategically. If you play your cards right, the extra money can be a great launching pad to help bolster your financial future.

Even if your raise does not amount to a drastic paycheck increase, it will add up eventually. "Over time, that difference in income could provide a boost to your lifestyle or be put toward other financial goals," said Nerdwallet.

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