$22m winner: Best ways to handle cash

By Ben Irwin

Christchurch man offers words of wisdom before $25m Powerball draw tomorrow.

Photo / Natalie Slade
Photo / Natalie Slade

If you win this week's $25 million Powerball jackpot, don't "spend like a maniac".

That is the advice from a Christchurch resident who last year took home $22.6 million after winning Big Wednesday.

This week's Lotto Powerball jackpot hits $25 million tomorrow, which, if won, would be the sixth-biggest Lotto prize in New Zealand history.

The Christchurch winner took a month to claim his prize.

The winning draw, held on September 25, became the talk of the town for weeks and friends, neighbours and workmates in Christchurch were telling one another to check any old tickets they had lying around.

In the end, Lotto New Zealand had to track down the winner.

"The first I had any clue was when there was a knock at my door," he said.

"Life has changed - you can't deny it.

"What's different? I give more money to charities now, I help as much as I can without thinking twice. It's a nice feeling."

Five months on, the lucky man has still not decided how to spend the bulk of his new-found wealth.

"It's such a bizarre experience winning that much money. I think about it all the time.

"But I'm still working. I get bored easily. So I want to make sure I have something to keep me occupied when I decide to finish work."

The newly minted multimillionaire is slowly putting together plans for his dream home, which he hopes to start building in Christchurch soon.

He advised a slow and steady approach for anyone who is lucky enough to win this week's big prize.

The biggest individual lottery prize won in New Zealand was $36.7 million for Big Wednesday, bought at the Kuripuni Lotto and Post Shop in Masterton in 2009.

A family syndicate, "Irish Luck", first bought an ambulance for their local hospital and have bought another one since.

- NZ Herald

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