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B.C. resident decides to retire after $1M lottery win — would you do the same?

The amount you need to retire all depends on your lifestyle, but there are certain considerations to keep in mind.

Susan Hoce poses after winning a $1 million lottery jackpot.
At first, Susan Hoce thought there was a "glitch" when reading how big of a lottery prize she had won. (Courtsey: BCLC)

One Abbotsford, B.C. can now unwind, relax and slow down her busy lifestyle as she plans to retire.

Susan Hoce is the winner of a $1 million Gold Ball prize in the Nov. 18 Lotto 6/49 draw. The win comes at a perfect time for the Abbotsford resident, who says she can now finally “take the pressure off,” pay her mortgage and settle into her retirement.

“Blessed! I will need time to let this sink in,” said Hoce.

She was at the Royal Canadian Legion in Aldergrove, B.C. when she discovered she had won the lottery.

At first, Hoce thought she had won a free play and $10,000 at most, but it turned out she was missing several zeros to her win — her lottery ticket had actually won her $1,000,000.

“I didn’t know what to think!” said Hoce, while recalling the moment she won her big prize.

“I couldn’t see the numbers properly and thought it was a glitch,” said Hoce. “It didn’t make any sound and I thought maybe $1,000 or $10,000.”

Once she discovered her big $1 million prize, Hoce was in shock, and she was most excited to share the news with her cousin.

“She couldn’t believe it either!” said Hoce. “She was very emotional and happy for me.”

Hoce won in the Lotto 6/49 Gold Ball Prize Draw, after a white ball worth $1,000,000 was chosen in a draw of 16. Her winning numbers were 04427264-02.

The winning ticket was purchased at the BCLC Lotto kiosk inside Walmart on Mt. Lehman Road in Abbotsford. So far in 2023 alone, B.C. lottery players have redeemed more than $114 million in winnings from Lotto 6/49.

How much money do you really need to retire in Canada?

At first, $1 million sounds like it could be more than enough to retire comfortably in Canada, but the rising costs of living are catching up with retirees throughout the nation. An early 2023 survey from BMO found that Canadians believe they’ll need $1.7 million to retire — up 20 per cent from 2020.

However some financial experts disagree and will likely tell you the same thing: the amount you really need all depends on your lifestyle. Think about the anticipated length of your retirement, your desired life, forecast your “nest egg” and ask yourself how much you’re spending now versus how much you plan to spend in retirement.

Jeet Dhillon, a senior portfolio manager at TD Wealth, said to Yahoo Finance Canada that she advises her clients to expect 70 to 80 per cent of their current annual living expenses to remain in retirement. Anywhere from $700,000 to $1 million would be a “good ballpark figure” for the average Canadian, as a starting point.

For more analysis on how much money do you really need to retire in Canada, read the latest as part of Yahoo Finance Canada's Ask the Expert series.

Tools to stop gambling

If you're looking to take a break from gambling, self-exclusion programs can be effective tools. See here for resources that are available across Canada.

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