If only we had to deal with such a problem….we all hope to have this problem BUT it does bring things one must be prepared to deal with to survive.
How to Survive Winning the Lottery
So, you hold a winning ticket in your hand, and the shock has yet to set in. What next?
Winning the lottery is one of the best things that can happen to you, but only if you do it right. Just take a moment to imagine life after winning millions. Your name would be available to the public, and you may have to make a press appearance or two. Even if you don’t, most of the people around you will know you won. You’re an instant celebrity, and your life is now open and public. As a prepper, likely living a rather private and secluded life, a lot will change.
Of course, the next question is what to do with the earnings? What is the best way to spend so much money, particularly when it comes to prepping for future events? Should you trust a bank? Should you hold onto cash yourself? Are there better ways to invest, or is that something you should stay away from altogether?
More importantly, where do you go from here?
Consider Your Anonymity
After realizing you won, but before turning in your ticket, there is something you should consider. Most state lotteries require winners to claim their earnings publicly. However, a handful of states allow winners to remain anonymous if they so choose. Those states include Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, Ohio, North Dakota and South Carolina. Arizona, Georgia, Texas and New Hampshire also allow some form of anonymity.
If you live in one of the aforementioned states, then you can decide whether or not to go public about your win. But if you live in another state — California and Wisconsin prohibit anonymity altogether — you will have to claim your win in front of everyone.
Even if the option is not available, this is something to consider before turning in a ticket. Understand how your life may change after coming forward, and what that means for your prepping journey.
Hire Some Help
Unless you’re already a millionaire with a trusted circle of advisers, you’re going to need some. As soon as you can, look into hiring an attorney, financial adviser and an accountant. The attorney will deal with escrow, legal and public affairs. The financial adviser will help invest and safely store your money. The accountant will help with a new budget as well as tax and IRS requirements.
No matter what you plan to do with the money, enlisting help is one of the best things you can do to ease any stress or additional burdens you might incur. Plus, it’s rare that people really know how to handle that much money. That’s why 70% of people who receive a big sum of money end up broke a few years after.
Know Your Plan
Preppers always think ahead, which means you probably have a five or ten-year plan in motion. Follow that plan, just speed it up a little thanks to all the new funds. If you were planning to acquire some property or a home in the next few years, get it now. If you planned to outfit your existing property with a bugout shelter and supplies, push up the timeline.
The best part of prepping is that you’re always ready for what’s coming next. It’s likely you already have everything in place to survive as-is, so you technically don’t need much more.
Sticking to your plan, despite the money, will not just keep you on track, but it will also keep you alive if something does happen in the middle of all this.
Where to Keep Your Money
With that much money, there’s no need to keep it all in one place, but you don’t want to trust the banks to hold onto it either. In an emergency situation, everyone knows that the banks will be one of the first places to be hit, not just by criminals and thieves but by all kinds of panicking people too. And anything in a bank is within easy reach of the government
It’s safer to have the money set aside already. So, where do you keep it?
Cryptocurrency is popular these days, but it’s not a good idea as far as prepping is concerned. If and when the grid goes down it’s basically useless — as are most paper currencies including federal bonds and cash.
The best way to invest the money as a prepper would be to roll it into your real estate or property, hide away some cash just in case, or purchase precious metals. If not metals than trade goods and supplies that you can use to barter when society goes to hell.
As for hiding spots for the cash, the obvious place would be somewhere in your bugout shelter. At the least, make sure it’s close enough to your exit that you can grab it quickly on the way out. The last thing you want to do is forget any cash or valuables you have stored because you’re in a hurry. You’ll need them to barter.
Watch Out for Greed
Money does some weird things to people, especially huge lottery sums. Family, friends and acquaintances might come calling, asking for money they didn’t earn. Strangers might show up on your doorstep begging for charity. Others still might hide malicious intent, like targeting you with a lawsuit.
Unfortunately, all of these things come with the territory. You need to understand that it will happen and you need to be prepared. Learn to say “no,” especially when it’s about something you don’t want to do. Only give away or share what you’re truly willing to lose. Do your best to hunker down, especially during the weeks after winning, and stay away from the public world for a while. If you’re lucky, most people will forget what happened.
This is also where having a plan in place helps. If you know how you plan to spend and invest your money in advance, you are in a better position to turn away others or refuse offers.
Take it in Stride
Winning the lottery doesn’t have to be a death sentence for your old way of life. It will change some things, sure, but if you play your cards right you won’t live any differently, and that’s a good thing.
For starters, stick to your prepping plans, including those you had for a buying property or installing a shelter and then outfitting it with supplies. The great part about having more money is that you can speed up the entire process and even add some extra here and there.
Hire some help as soon as possible. You’ll need an accountant and attorney at the very least, but a financial adviser is also a safe bet as long as YOU, and not them, retain full and singular control of execution of expenditures.
Finally, try to invest or spend the money on things that would hold valuable after a disaster or emergency. A little cash is okay, but you don’t want to keep all your currency in cash and you certainly don’t want to store it at a bank.
If you do these things, you should be well on your way to surviving a major lottery win!