Meet Nora, a Californian who found herself on the lucky side of life when she and her husband won a staggering $1.2 million in the lottery back in 2020. Like most winners, Nora was confronted with a crucial decision: to take the full amount over 25 years as annuity payments or opt for a smaller lump sum of $696,000. Seeking expert advice, she turned to the renowned financial guru, Dave Ramsey, on The Dave Ramsey Show.
Dave Ramsey’s Advice: The Smarter Choice
Nora shared with Dave Ramsey that she already had several investments and a comfortable monthly income, thanks to her husband’s two pensions. Taking the annuity option would have added approximately $4,500 extra per month for the next 25 years. However, Dave had a clear and confident response: taking the lump sum was the “really easy decision.”
Doubling Returns through Lump Sum
Dave Ramsey’s advice was straightforward and compelling. He emphasized that by taking the lump sum and making wise investment choices, Nora could expect to nearly double her earnings compared to the long-term annuity.
While the annuity payments would be taxable each time, the lump sum would result in a single, larger tax bill. Despite this, investing the lump sum after taxes would prove to be more lucrative than leaving it tied up in the annuity.
A Strategy for the Financially Savvy
For those who are prudent with their finances and have a steady history of wise investments, taking the lump sum is the way to go. Dave pointed out that if someone might mismanage the lump sum, they could consider the annuity as a safer option. But for individuals like Nora, who have shown careful money management skills, the lump sum provides a wealth-building opportunity.
Graham Stephan’s Billion-Dollar Jackpot Plan
Another financial expert, Graham Stephan, has his strategy for handling a colossal lottery jackpot of one billion dollars or more. His approach aims to ensure that the money lasts a lifetime, offering financial security for the future.
The Diversified Investment Plan
Graham’s first move would be to put a substantial portion of the winnings into a stock market index fund, providing exposure to a diversified portfolio of companies. This strategy allows for potential growth and stability.
Safety with Government Bonds
To further safeguard the fortune, Graham advises investing in government bonds, which are known for their relative safety and stability in the financial market.
Real Estate for Passive Income
Graham understands the importance of generating passive income for long-term financial stability. To achieve this, he suggests investing in both commercial and residential real estate. These properties would generate significant monthly income without depleting the jackpot.
The Importance of Prudent Spending
While a billion-dollar jackpot might seem like an endless stream of wealth, Graham stresses the importance of responsible spending. He recommends allocating a reasonable portion, around $40 million, for extravagant luxuries like cars and boats, but not going overboard.
The Cautionary Tales of Others
However, not every lottery winner gets the chance to receive such invaluable advice. Some unfortunate souls lost their fortunes due to simple yet costly mistakes, while others had to bear the consequences of poor choices made by their loved ones.