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What would you buy if you won £1 million?

28th November 2018 Print

Realistically, any one person’s likelihood of winning £1 million is close to zero. It may occasionally happen for the lucky few, but that’s about it. Hence, most people don’t realistically expect to suddenly find themselves staring at a bank balance of £1 million. And as a result, it’s hard to imagine what you’d do with the cash, if you somehow got your hands on it.

This is precisely the theoretical scenario the folks at Betway decided to investigate with a recent poll. Speaking to thousands of everyday members of the UK public, they quizzed those who took part on their spending priorities. If they won £1 million, what would be the first thing they’d purchase?

Contrary to popular belief, it seems we’re not quite as frivolous as you may have expected. Or for that matter, as generous as we could be!

Property Purchases Prioritised

Of the thousands of people polled, an impressive 43% said that the first thing they would do is buy their own home. A figure which reflects the current housing situation in the United Kingdom, which makes it borderline impossible for newcomers to step onto the property ladder for the first time. In the absence of a lottery win, it just isn’t going to happen for millions. 

After this, the second biggest score was paying off mortgage debts, which was the priority for 15% of respondents. Paying off debts in general turned out to be the priority for 11% of imaginary millionaires in the study.

In terms of more frivolous purchases, just 13% stated that they would prioritise booking a luxury holiday after winning £1 million. Even further down the ladder, a mere 8% said that their first purchase would be a new car.  5% of those polled stated that they would use the funds to start a business of some kind.

In terms of generosity however, there wasn’t a great deal to speak of. In fact, just 1% of those polled stated that they would prioritise donating some of their winnings to charity. 

Generational variances

The study also brought to light some fascinating findings, with respect to how winners in different age brackets would spend their money. For example, while 48% of those aged 18 to 24 would buy a house, this plummets to just 30% for those aged 45 to 54. By contrast, 26% of the people in the 18 to 24 age bracket would buy a new car, slipping to just 2% for those aged 54 to 64. 

Only around 5% of those in the younger bracket said that they would book a luxury holiday, compared to a full 38% in the highest 65+ age bracket. It was also found that the 25 to 34 age bracket was the most ‘generous’ in terms of theoretical charity donations, though still scored a rather paltry 3%.

Food for thought? Or simply clarification of your assumptions?

Now, be honest – how would you really splash the cash, if you unexpectedly came across £1 million?