Winning lotto is unlikely but we can always dream. What should you do with a $1 million windfall?

Say to yourself: “Cool! One million down, one million to go”.

On its own, it’s not retirement material for a Gen Xer. Or, at least it shouldn’t be. A million bucks ain’t what it used to be. While it’s not a bad start, Xers should be aiming higher than that.

(And, funny, this is the question I posed at the start of Debt Man Walking. How many million from lotto would you need to quit work? I said four. But that’s just me. And I’ve never bought a lotto ticket.)

It should be enough to obliterate your mortgage, which should be second on your list after clearing your “dumb” debt, including car loans, credit cards, etc.

Then … well, then comes the real preparations for investing to help make you that second, third, or fourth million. The extras that should allow you to retire “comfortably”.

By “comfortably”, I mean something a little short of “obscenely comfortable”.

Let’s say there’s $500,000 left over after paying out the home loan, or buying a house. You’ve also freed up, perhaps, $2000 a month on mortgage repayments/rent.

Investing that wisely is the opportunity to make millions two, three and four. And be able to roll around in piles of money like Uncle Scrooge McDuck, or Kiwi actress Anna Hutchison a few Underbelly seasons ago.

But will it be shares and property, or further spread across more defensive investments, such as cash and bonds? Consider some of it inside super.

If you’re not sure, get good advice. But don’t waste your opportunity to set yourself up properly for life.

Bruce Brammall is the author of Debt Man Walking ( and principal adviser with Castellan Financial Consulting.

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