Back in my seventh-grade art class, we were asked to design our dream house if money was no object. We had exorbitant ideas for our future abode - big master bedrooms, swimming pools, hot tubs, a bowling alley. I think part of my house plan included an indoor movie theater, a waterslide and maybe a roller coaster (I can't really remember; it's been almost 30 years ago). It would be nice to have that dream house, but my reality doesn't include an indoor movie theater or a swimming pool. But it's OK to dream.
I rarely play Powerball or any of the other lotteries. Sure there may be that chance I'll match all the numbers and win millions of dollars, but I tend to be on the practical side. Well, most of the time. This past Wednesday, someone in California won the $425 million Powerball jackpot. Earlier this week, the Associated Press had an article about lottery winners being urged to avoid big purchases. It asked the question about blowing all that money on a single purchase. A single winner taking the lump sum payout would get about $230 million. The quick cash grab would leave more than $100 million.
Perhaps investing the money wisely would be a good idea.
"When you look at $100 million, you think that well will never run dry," said Mark DiGiovanni, a certified financial planner in Atlanta in the article. "If you have $100 million and lose it, that's probably worse than having never won at all."
When the Mega Millions jackpot hit $656 million back in 2012, I'll admit that I bought a ticket. Of course none of my numbers matched. I pitched in a few cents to go toward a Powerball ticket not too long ago, but that didn't get anywhere either.
So what would be on my wish list if I ever won a big lottery (considering I would buy a ticket of course)? In the AP article, a security guard from St. Louis was asked that question, and he said probably a $100,000 home and possibly traveling the world before settling down.
The article also gave a few purchase suggestions if one hit it big on the Powerball - a home by the sea, the Copper Beech Farm in Greenwich, Conn., valued at $130 million, a yacht for $79.4 million, an artwork by Claude Monet that may be $10 million to $35 million or a $100 million townhouse in Manhattan's Upper East Side.
My thoughts would be probably along the same lines as the security guard from St. Louis - maybe a house (it doesn't have to be fancy, but a pool might be nice), a newer vehicle, a trip to somewhere and of course, investments. I absolutely have no interest in owning a yacht, a private plane or a townhouse in New York City, but a Monet original might be cool.
So what will the winner of this jackpot spent his or her winnings on? A small island? A cottage in the south of France? A Ferrari? We'll just have to see if anyone claims the money.