The big one
...may not be your ticket to retirementLOUISE RISK AND ANDREA FOX
Take all the advice and don't make any major lifestyle changes, the experts tell Louise Risk and Andrea Fox.
In the past five years, Waikato has been the home of four Lotto-made millionaires. The most recent being the yet-to-be-indentified Kihikihi winner, who claimed a whopping $5.5m in Wellington yesterday after winning the Powerball jackpot on Saturday.
But winning the big one is no guarantee of a happy and comfortable retirement, according to the experts.
Waikato University psychology professor Michael O'Driscoll said there was more to a happy retirement than just financial security, and he advised the new millionaire to think carefully before making any major lifestyle changes.
"Most people don't start thinking about [retirement] very seriously until they're 60.
"You don't want to retire and then start thinking ‘what am I going to do now?'."
Prof O'Driscoll said in most cases work provided structure to a person's day, and gave them a sense of purpose.
"A job provides not just an income, it's a way of life. Retiring without a plan is not a good idea."
He said people should look at "push" and "pull" factors when considering retirement.
Push factors were aspects of their job they did not like, such as lack of stimulation and fulfillment, while pull factors were opportunities the person could take up if they were no longer working.
Prof O'Driscoll said it was his rough estimate that a person needed "between $500,000 and $1m" tucked away if they were retiring at age 65, but said $5m should be enough for people to retire on if they invested it wisely and did not spend the capital.
"It depends how lavish their lifestyle is, of course. A lot of people just spend it all and then have nothing left."
Sharebroker Forsyth Barr's head of research Rob Mercer agreed, saying the amount a winner splurged in the beginning would have a huge effect on whether they were still living comfortably 10 years later.
Mr Mercer said if a Lotto winner had been living on a tight budget, an initial splash out was inevitable.
"But they need to think through where they might finish in 10 years. The more they spend at the front end the less income generation and less [money for] growth they will have at the end."
Mr Mercer said asking a financial adviser to show them different scenarios for what their money would look like after 10 years if they spent 10 per cent or 20 per cent or half of it now would be illuminating.
"It's very easy to spend too much too early and create another load of costs on your yearly expenditure so you get worse and worse off."
NZ Lotteries spokeswoman Emilia Mazur said they provided all big winners with advice about contacting a financial adviser, a lawyer and an accountant.
WAIKATO'S BIG WINNERS
2012: Powerball win of $26.5 million from a ticket bought in Te Kauwhata.
2011: Big Wednesday win of $5.2 million from a ticket bought in Te Kuiti.
2009: Powerball win of $16.1 million from a ticket bought in Countdown Cambridge.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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