If you won the lottery would you go bankrupt? : The Saturday Weekend Review #91

the saturday weekend review fall trees lottery winner bankruptcyTHE MILLIONAIRE BUDGET


I read an online article about what not to do when you win the lottery which made me wonder why people go bankrupt when money falls in their lap.

I know what you are thinking…how does someone who won millions of dollars blow through it all so they go bankrupt?
Easy… they don’t manage their money properly.

Whether you are a millionaire or not you still have to budget your money. I know some of you might laugh at that but money is money and there is no special budget for rich people either. It’s simple math but people tend to complicate money to the point where they don’t know where all of their money went until it’s too late.


Lottery tickets are a waste of money


Some people may say that spending money on lottery tickets is like throwing money out the window and in one sense I agree but in another you can’t win if you don’t play.

My wife and I play the lottery and buy one line with encore of Lotto Max every week. No, there have been no heart-stopping moments checking our lottery tickets but it’s our way of splurging on something so we are willing to take the money risk.

It may sound odd that a frugal guy like me would spend money playing the lottery but just because I’m frugal doesn’t mean I don’t like to live a little and enjoy my life. It’s about spending less than you earn and enjoying life in moderation. The most we’ve ever won was $22 and that was just recently. I know, don’t spend it all in one place but we did manage to use the winnings to cover the costs of future tickets.

How do you win the lottery in Canada?

If I had the answer I’d likely be running a blog called “Secrets to winning the lottery” but that’s not the case. Plenty of people every day become rich or win enough to allow them a stress free financial life all around Canada.

Winning the lottery doesn’t mean just buying lotto max lottery or lotto 649 etc. as you can win cash from other draws such as the Dream Home Lottery, Heart and Stroke Lottery or the Princess Margaret Lottery just to name a few in Ontario. You might even get lucky winning with an instant scratch ticket which can set you up nicely if you win the top prize.

Just a couple of weeks ago a 30-year-old girl Deanna Bergeron from Orilla, Ontario won a $50 million dollar Lotto Max lottery draw. I think it’s great that a young person won but most people seem to think that all people who win eventually will go broke.

We know someone who did win millions in a Lotto Max draw and has invested his money in a business and real estate. He is making money with his money rather than blowing it all on vacations and toys although he has splurged of course.

I do have to wonder why people go bankrupt when they have all the money they will ever need after winning millions in a lottery. Most winners say winning the lottery won’t change your life, but it will if you let it.

I don’t know many people who don’t quit their jobs and buy a new home or even go on vacations with their winnings and that is all life changing. It gets even fancier when the money you spend is on the best of the best and that lifestyle becomes the norm.

I’m sure you’ve all closed your eyes at some point to imagine picking up that big cheque at the OLG office and then dreamt about how your life would change. We’ve all done it because it’s the only way many of us believe we will achieve financial freedom. Yes, by winning the lottery. The odds are slim so dreaming is the only way to go.

You don’t have to rely on winning the lottery to live a financially free life either. Personally I can’t tell you exactly what would go down if I won millions of dollars but if I did win some serious money you can bet I’d invest it wisely. I’d be ashamed to say I went bankrupt after having millions of dollars in my hands.


In one door out the other


It makes no sense how people who win the lottery manage to screw it up but it happens. Why? It happens because we get used to a lifestyle and it becomes a normal place where bigger is better and having the best of the best will only do.

People who win the lottery or even movie stars who are worth millions of dollars think that the money they have comes as an endless supply. Just look at Mike Sorrentino who played “The Situation” in the popular series Jersey Shore who was arrested for tax fraud and failing to file taxes in 2011 on an income of $1.95 million dollars last week.

Maybe the situation will sort itself (no pun intended, OK maybe a bit) out but why is it that someone who earned millions can’t pay his taxes? Likely because he has no money or he’s greedy and doesn’t want to pay up like the rest of society. The real answer perhaps is that he got too used to the “rich guy” lifestyle. It’s hard to live up to something you’ve started especially when the money is not rolling in as fast or you invest it all with nothing to back your  ventures.

It’s certainly clear how difficult it is for some people to make their lottery winnings or millions of dollars last without going broke if they aren’t smart with their spending habits.

Do you think you’d go bankrupt if you won the lottery or had millions of dollars?


Canadian Budget Binder blog news


Exciting news! It was an honour to be featured by Rob Carrick in the Globe and Mail online Carrick on Money this weekend. Rob shared Dan’s guest post from Our Big Fat Wallet who shared How going vegan affected their budget. Thanks Rob for sharing and a big thanks to Dan for putting together an informative article with a personal flare which I really enjoy.

In other news the blog has kept busy and more good news is that Katrina is back writing for us after taking the summer jetting around Canada for work and spending time with her family. Be on the lookout for her upcoming blog post.


CBB blog posts this week


Just in case you’ve missed any of my blog posts this week I will link to them all below.

If you have a question that you would like to ask Mr.CBB fill out the contact Mr.CBB form on the Home Page and send in your questions. Mr.CBB will look in his mailbag weekly and pick a question to answer on the blog.


Fan deals and inspirations


garage sale deals

Submit your Brag or Inspiration If you have a brag that you want me to share email me at canadianbudgetbinder (@) [yahoo] [.ca] or fill out my contact form by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post.

Jen is still out pounding the pavement bargain-hunting at garage sales on Saturday’s. Check out what she found this past week.

Today’s deals:

  • California shutter (to cover up my electrical panel in the basement) $3.00 (they were asking $4.00)
    Baseball glove $.50
    Anti slip mat for area rug $1.50 (they were asking $2.00)
    Peacock feather glass marquise $.50
    T-shirt and leggings (for me) $1.00
    Total $6.50

Well done Jen… you’re an inspiration to anyone who wants to live a frugal lifestyle on a budget. If you haven’t read Jen’s budgeting story it’s a must read. I’m proud of Jen who has been a part of the CBB family since the beginning a few years back. She is still budgeting and saving money today and now writing this little section of the post every week to showcase her deals of the week.


Making a difference


If you know a personal finance blogger that is making a difference and want to nominate them please send me an email canadianbudgetbinder (@) yahoo.ca so I can reach out to them for a feature story.

I’d like to welcome my new personal finance blogger friend Kipp!!

Hi CBB Fans!

I am Kipp with Frankly Frugal Finance. I started early in life as a bit of a saver and went wayward during my college years. I have gone from having 5 figures in Net Worth in my early twenties, to negative five figures and now back to positive five figures at the present time.

The primary reason I began blogging is to be accountable to myself in my journey towards financial independence. I recently mapped out my Road to Financial Independence and I am on track to be able to retire at age 43.

On my blog you will find a variety of personal finance posts and a decent amount of number crunching posts. Perhaps I am a bit of an odd duck, I enjoy crunching numbers and trying to find new ways to save money.

I am continuously trying to improve my frugality and looking to share my frugal experiments and my calculations with my readers. Whether or not I actually make a lifestyle change will depend on the math and the value in relation to time.

Additionally I am investing some of my retirement funds into dividend stocks and I will blog about my experiences in this area.

As a new homeowner, I am also trying to learn to do more DIY projects as this is an area in which I need to grow.  Since it is an area in which I need to improve I plan on including household maintenance projects in my goals to help keep myself accountable and it can be a good resource to share to say if the experiences were difficult or not.

My life outside of the blog consists of working full-time doing various accounting tasks, spending time with my wife, and family gatherings. Although there are currently no kids, we do plan on having that lifestyle change sometime in the future.

Thank you CBB for featuring me on your Make a Difference segment of your weekend post!


Top recipe


Tailgate Skillet Cheese

If you don’t already know I have a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot where I share recipes from other Food Bloggers from around the world.

Once a week I pick one recipe that has been submitted as my Top Recipe of the week. Trust me when I say this is no easy task as some of these foodies can cook up a storm.

This week Deb at Life Currents shared a Tailgate Skillet with Cheese with a side of pretzel chips which had my mouth watering. I hope you enjoy this recipe. Thanks Deb for sharing at The Free Recipe Depot on Facebook.


Editor’s Pick


Every week I will pick a blog post of the week from around the web that I found interesting and want to share with you and an Editor’s top blog post pick.

Editor’s blog post pick of the week goes to 1500 Days to Freedom with their post “Secret Millionaires on my Street”. This is one of those blog posts that teaches us that just because someone has “stuff” doesn’t mean they are rich. I like how the writers describe their #1 millionaire neighbours the Spendywoods and how they found out about their money stash.

Their second and third millionaire neighbours are similar to many people who have worked and saved their money the right way over the years. They also know how to be frugal and make that work for them. We have some rich people on our street as well but you wouldn’t know if it you judged them based on their house, cars and the way they dress and act.


Google search terms


Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Keep in mind any spelling errors below are because I share with you the exact way they typed their search engine query to land on my blog.

  • Sexy man Sexy Cook– I can’t get over how many people think it’s sexy for a man to cook.
  • I need to budget– Good for you!
  • My neighbour shows off – There is one in every neighbourhood doesn’t mean they are rich or better off.
  • Stashing cash in the toilet- Believe it because people do it all the time.

Thanks for joining me for this edition of The Saturday Weekend Review #91. Join me here again for more crazy stories from around the web and at home!


Money Quote Logo CBB


Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

Related articles

Share to...

Similar Posts


  1. Most of the people lose their ground when they win a huge lottery. Instead of taking some intelligent financial decisions they spend most of the money on useless things. It is difficult to keep your feet on the ground, but one should always take a good back of money before fulfilling their dreams.

  2. How many times have I daydreamed about winning the lottery! LOL, I think everyone does it at some point. I’ve been slowly weaning myself off lottery tickets, not that I’ve ever been a big spender on them, it’s the $20 a month that could be going elsewhere that bothers me. Let’s just say ROI is not high. It’s difficult to say how things would turn out if I won, I seem to have equal parts saver and spender in me. I think what would bother me most is all the people that come after you when you win money, I completely understand why many people with money live a very simple non-luxurious life – they don’t want to be the target of constant letters, questions and people asking for money. I think I’d become a recluse and live on an island! There’s nothing wrong with giving, its just the people that are so ungrateful when you give them something but they believe it’s not enough. Who are they to offer that judgement?

  3. I would be looking for advise for sure. I know so little about investing that I need all the help I can get but I know I need to be careful there as not all advisers would be honest enough. I would be trying to hang on and have the money last as long as possible….

  4. Oh I’ve closed my eyes for the daydream a time or two and even splurged on a few scratch and wins here and there, but its not my retirement savings plan 🙂 thats for sure. I don’t think we’d go bankrupt. I say we because if I won it would be my family that would be making the decisions on what to do with the money and not just me. I think it would end up somewhere in the 60-40 range of investment (60%) and spending (40%) although that would include paying off the big bills (the mortgage)… Probably not the best, but with a big win I’d like to be in the position of working because I like to – not just because I have to. Yes I’m greedy 😉

  5. I wouldn’t go bankrupt, but I could use the money 😀

    In the past years we have developed our own businesses and, even if we do have some sort of a ‘lifestyle inflation’, we are still doing great and not splurging. We do eat well and care for our baby, but are still careful with our spending, have no debt and save for our daughter.

    1. Do you think we just tell ourselves that we won’t go bankrupt because we really don’t know how we will react to winning that much money. Mind you, I don’t think anyone is willing to test that out on us by giving us millions as an experiment. lol

  6. It seems hard to fathom that lottery winners could go bankrupt but you hear about it often enough that it does make one wonder. I avoid the risk by not buying lottery tickets. Ha ha! Glad to catch up on your weekly 😀

  7. I think it was Oprah who once had a guy on her show who did this experiment where they planted a very large sum of money in a garbage bin so this homeless man would find it, then they followed his journey. I think it took him something really quick like a month to blow through everything, and yes it all came down to simple money management. He didn’t spend it on cleaning himself up, getting an apt, or anything of that nature. I’m not putting down homeless people as I’m sure another homeless person might have done something different, but money mgt skills are proper emotional alignment are necessary to make your money work for you, i.e., I don’t think I’d go broke if I won the lotto…but in full disclosure, I never play. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.