What Would We Do If We Won $1 Million?

by Khaleef "Fat Guy" Crumbley on July 11, 2011

in Goals

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As you all know, I am a member of the Yakezie network (a group of the best personal finance blogs) with my main site, where I talk about the bible and money. I also entered Fat Guy, Skinny Wallet into the Yakezie challenge back in February.

Well, a number of people within the network have decided to post what our plans would be if we won $1 Million. Since you know that we are trying to pay off debtover $100,000 when I started this site – you should expect that to be one of the first things on our list!

I wrote about this a while ago on my other site, and had a bunch of interesting comments. Let’s see if my answers have changed from then.

Here are all the things that we would do if we won $1 million. To make this easy, I am going to assume that the $1 million figure is after taxes:

Pay off debt – Every extra dime that we bring in is going toward this goal, so that wouldn’t change. We still have about $100,000 thanks to a recent mattress purchase that came with 12 months of interest-free financing.

Pay off my parent’s debt – That still wouldn’t repay them for all that they’ve done for me in my over 3 decades on this earth, but it’s a start!

Put money aside for my parent’s retirement – I hate to see my mother dealing with the various stress and frustrations caused by her job. I would want to put her closer to retirement.

Give much more than 10% to my church – One of our strongest motivations for getting out of debt is supporting our local church!

Retire – Well, sort of. I would focus more on this site and my consulting business. This would free me up to get the necessary certifications and full-time experience to become a financial adviser.

Save – I would fully fund retirement accounts (adding up to the current IRA contribution limits during each year, for the next 10 years) for both of us, and put aside 1 year worth of living expenses.


Take an extended vacation – We love to travel, but we hate debt even more, so we are usually limited in our options. We would probably go somewhere (or a couple of places) for at least a month!

Buy a new laptop for my wife – Her laptop is so beat up and run down – I would have no problem replacing it (as long as it’s not better than mine ;-))!

Create Our “Giving” Account – My wife and I have always had it as a goal to establish a bank account that would only be used to help people in need. This way, even if things are “tight” for us financially, we can still be a blessing to someone else.

Buy a house? – I think I would need more than $1 million to do this. I detest mortgages, so if I wouldn’t have enough left over to pay cash, then we’d wait. I have no real desire to own a home (I haven’t been fooled by the “pride of ownership” brainwashing), and would only do this so we could better help out family if they needed it. I honestly don’t know if I would rent or buy in this case!

What about you? If you were given $1 million after taxes, what would you do with it?

photo credit: aresauburn

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Krantcents July 11, 2011 at 3:27 pm

Although a million dollars is not very much, I would like to set up an educational foundation to award scholarships. The rest I would invest to increase my assets and guarantee a very comfortable retirement.

Fat Guy July 20, 2011 at 4:31 pm

A scholarship fund is very admirable! You could set it up as an endowment and allow it to grow over time!

The Wife July 11, 2011 at 3:51 pm

I can’t believe my laptop is so low on your list! 😉 I am even more appalled that it can’t be better than yours.

Fat Guy July 20, 2011 at 4:42 pm

The order doesn’t matter. It will get done. And it can’t be better than mine because you want a smaller screen! 😉

Robert @ The College Investor July 11, 2011 at 9:25 pm

I would pay off debt and save as well! Its the best way to go, as KrantCents said, its not very much money!

Kay Lynn @ Bucksome Boomer July 11, 2011 at 9:51 pm

You’re such a generous guy and its so great to how much you would give out of this million dollars. I’m inspired to go write my post now….

cashflowmantra July 11, 2011 at 10:31 pm

You have quite an extensive list here. Looks like you have devoted much thought to this topic. It is almost like you enjoyed making a shopping list and spending someone else’s money. Kinda like my wife.

retirebyforty July 11, 2011 at 11:15 pm

Whoa, that’s a lot of things for 1 million dollars. Is it going to be enough?

Andrea July 12, 2011 at 10:16 am

lol@cashflow mantra

Great list! I had never considered giving my parents money, they are still relatively young (48 and 52) and have a decent income as well as assets and passive income but it sure would be great to tuck 150,000 in an account and hand it to my father on his 55th birthday and be be able to tell him here, go on vacation you don’t have to work (for a living) any more!

Also it’s great to see so many bloggers GIVE, love it!

Jackie July 12, 2011 at 9:45 pm

I would pay off the house, book a trip to Antarctica, and fund my son’s college. After that, I have no idea! But I’ll be sure to think of something if it actually comes to pass 🙂

Harri @ TotallyMoney July 13, 2011 at 9:19 am

Serious hats off to your generosity. It’s so important to stay true to your family and philanthropic values regardless of your financial circumstances.

Your view on the house front is an interesting one. I probably would buy a house and rent it out. I’d definitely want at least 5% going to the charity I used to work for too.

Miss T @ Prairie Eco-Thrifter July 13, 2011 at 2:04 pm

Your list is similar to what mine would be . I would basically look after all of those that matter the most to me and then save the rest. I might go on a few awesome vacations too.

Ashley @ Money Talks July 13, 2011 at 5:18 pm

That’s quite a list for “just” a million dollars. I’m sure you will do all those things someday!!

Spruce Up Your Finances July 14, 2011 at 9:32 pm

Buying a house is definitely on my agenda. I would also try to invest it in a business or just plain invest it in mutual funds, bonds, etc.

Marie at FamilyMoneyValues July 16, 2011 at 3:50 pm

You’re such a good son!! Hope you get the check!

Super Frugalette July 19, 2011 at 6:06 pm

I am really pleased with your forethought regarding your folks. We so often think of our kids and not our folks.

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