Budgeting · Finance · Life · Personal Finance

What You Should Do With Your Money Instead of Playing The Powerball.

1:292,000,000

That’s your chance of winning the Powerball.

“So there’s a chance right?”

I hear so many times and although this statement is correct the odds are obviously incredibly small. At the time of this writing, the Powerball jackpot is at $1.5 Billion dollars. The largest it’s ever been.  I personally am not a fan of the Power Ball and am mind blown by the amount of money given to the local gas station attendant while I wait behind a hopeful winner. Here are #5 things you should use your money on before wasting it on the Powerball.

Invest

Investing is easier than ever! I recently published an article regarding some of the best apps that can improve your financial life, check it out Here. If you have knowledge of the current financial market and want the choice in what you invest in I would recommend using Robinhood which offers commission free trades. If you are the latter, Acorns is still a perfectly fine option! You have the selection between 5 different preset portfolios based on the risk you want to take on as an investor.
With the first week of 2016 being the worst opening week of the year in the history of both the Dow Jones Industrial Average & S&P 500 that $25-$50 could go a long way if you plan on holding long term with very attractive buying opportunities on the horizon later in the year.

Lend

I personally have not had experience using Lending Club but I have heard only great things about them. Lending Club is exactly what it sounds like….A Lending Club. It involves two parties, the investor, and the borrower. The investor can select the loans it wants to fund while the borrower pays a monthly fee at a fixed rate. Borrower’s go through extensive credit criteria so you are usually dealing with real people and scamming shouldn’t be an issue. You can even open an IRA with Lending Club! Lending Club has done over 13 billion dollars in loans and subject to the same consumer protection as with any bank loan.
Just to think you could be helping a single mother pay for her children’s groceries that needs an advance on her next paycheck or a surprise medical bill had just occurred and needs immediate financial attention.  I would definitely recommend checking it out Here.

Update Your Closet

Have you been eyeing that sweater or new tie at the mall for a while? Now is a justified reason to buy it! If you were set on spending a set amount on the PowerBall drawing don’t you think that new item of clothing that could be worn to work would go a longer way? Keeping an eye on upcoming sales and being on the email list of your favorite stores can help you stretch that $25 as far as it can go!

Maybe you even have a gift card from two Christmas’s ago that your great aunt gave you and can finally be put to use. This can be more beneficial if you are one of the thousands of current Americans that are single and could use a boost to get out there. Skip the gas station and head to the mall folks!

Go On A Trip

Seems crazy to think about but the amount you could be wasting could cover a majority of your stay. With new services such as Airbnb you can find places to stay at surprisingly low rates. I was searching this past weekend for stay in Cincinnati for the Bengals vs Steelers game (I don’t want to talk about it) and found numerous options for under $50 bucks. Significantly cheaper than any quality hotel in the area.
Another reason (if you needed one) to travel over throwing your money away to the Powerball is the fact that we are seeing the lowest gas prices since the turn of the century and its cheaper than ever to travel for some of us. Oil is trading under $30 dollars a barrel and not expected to raise anytime soon. Low gas prices are believed to be stay low through the spring so you have some time to properly plan out that next great trip.

Start Your Emergency Fund

Have you ever asked yourself the question “What would I do if I couldn’t go into work for a prolonged period of time?” If you can’t answer that question off the top of your head then listen up!
An emergency fund is a must have for any human being especially a Millennial. An Emergency Fund is a collection of money that you save and stash away to help cover unforeseen events such as job loss, car trouble or medical emergency. The exact number of how much you need to save is ultimately up to you but is advised that you have anywhere from 3 to 6 months’ worth of living expenses in your  fund.
Credit card or student loan debt? Pick a number that you feel comfortable with that could sustain your living and continue paying off that pesky debt. Emergency Fund’s are a must have.

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5 thoughts on “What You Should Do With Your Money Instead of Playing The Powerball.

  1. It’s good to have two to five thousand dollars of cash in the house, yet most Americans (80%) could NOT come up with an immediate $2,000 if disaster struck, so I am guessing they don’t have anything in the house, except maybe $37 in pennies! I also think people should keep some gold and silver, with which to barter, if there is ever a catastrophic event that makes our financial markets plummet or collapse entirely! How’s that sound?

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    1. If you get people to think about an Emergency Fund and the true worth of it having people have to be crazy not to implement! As far as the thought of keeping gold and silver if our market collapses entirely is an extremely scary thought and who knows with the market start of 2016!

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  2. I did a $2 ticket once for fun, as you know. I can’t imagine playing $20 on that kind of thing. I don’t think a 10 in 292.5 million chance is really any better than just 1 chance. I think it’s fine to play the occasional $2 ticket (though I doubt I’ll repeat mine) for the fun of a chance to dream. But even once a week feels a bit much. And apparently there are drawings multiple times a week? I’m obviously not an expert in this category.

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    1. There is absolutely no harm in that. Everything is okay in moderation! There are drawings every week for much less and people pour a good percentage of their paycheck into playing this. Think about if someone would spend $5 dollars every trip they go into the gas station on the Powerball or scratch off. The yearly amount spent is crazy to think about!

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  3. I see a lot of people who could use their PB money better elsewhere. It is hard to knock them any more or less than the daily Latte or tobacco addicted. I do buy a lotto ticket every once in a while. It is more as entertainment and never more than $5 worth. It is a fun dream to have until the drawing and the crash back to reality.

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