NewsPalm Beach CountyRegion C Palm Beach CountyWest Palm Beach


What to do if you don't hit the jackpot

Posted at 10:42 PM, Oct 19, 2018

There’s the mystique, the what if I won the $1 billion? 

“You never know, you never know someone always gets lucky,” said Erol Ozturk, who we interviewed after he bought lotto tickets at the North Palm Beach Marathon gas station. 

“It’s fun to fantasize about winning and what we’re going to do with the money,” said John Burgess, who was also buying tickets Friday at the Marathon. 

Enough money for you and your whole family to say “I quit.”

“If I win, I never have to work again,” Ozturk said. “The child and the mother of my child are secure for eternity.”

And hey, it’s happened before at this very store. 

“In 2016, one of our regular customers, he hit the jackpot. The lotto jackpot,” said Ash Zaman, the manager of the Marathon. They have a poster commemorating the occasion. 

We don’t want to kill the fun, but in case you don’t win, consider this from Eric Cornall, a wealth manager with Ocean View Private Wealth. 

“There are many better ways to spend money in my opinion,” Cornall said. 

If you started saving $5 a week when you were 20 years old in a tax-deferred Roth IRA account “and it just compounded at 7%, year over year, that money would end up being $80,000 by the time you’re 65,” Cornall said. 

Your best bet is to rely on yourself and the market. 

“Anything you can do that’s going to take the power out of your hands and put it into systematized, monthly savings, weekly savings is going to be the best thing you can do for your lifetime,” Cornall said. 

Remember your chances of winning are 1 in 302 million, but someone will eventually take home a jackpot so there's no harm in dreaming big.

“They’re taking your picture, so you’re going to win,” Zaman joked with a customer, referencing our camera. 

Even if Zaman doesn't sell the winning ticket, he's still making some extra cash.

“Lotto doesn’t give us that much money. But (customers) buy a lot of things with this lotto so that’s the reason we sell lotto,” Zaman said. 

Cornall recommends the annual payments opposed to the lump sum because he says it helps keep your spending honest.