When you win a big prize in New Zealand, the lottery company provide you with a very helpful winners brochure.
It doesn’t tell you what to do with your money, but has some very sensible advice on how to avoid blowing it all!
For starters it wisely advises only telling those people you really want to know about your win. And any syndicate members of course. Telling too many people can bring all sorts of uncomfortable situations out of the woodwork.
“You don’t have to work everything out in the first few days, or even in the first few weeks,” the booklet reassures. But do make plans, because “you may find yourself giving in to big-spending temptations you’ll regret later”.
“Talk to family and close friends about what you might do (if you don’t mind them knowing). Think about what you want to achieve over the rest of your life.”
Consider professional advice, and where you are going to get it. Advice from friends and family may be useful, but bear in mind that well meaning bad advice is worse than no advice at all.
Comprehensive support is given to all lottery winners. But the support required varies greatly – some winners are very financially savvy but some may never have had to deal with more money than their weekly benefits payment.
The New Zealand Lotteries Commission surveyed past winners, and Karen Jones spokesperson said:
“Many of our winners have been very generous, giving significant amounts to charities that are important to them.”
“Most had only told a few family and friends of their win and a lot had just paid off the mortgage and bought a bach – living the Kiwi dream.”