What to do with Sweepstakes Winnings

You’ve done all the legwork, you’ve researched all the sweepstakes that you want to enter and what you could win those sweepstakes, and finally you’ve entered all the sweepstakes that you want to.  You have spent hours upon hours entering the different sweepstakes and contests and have even positioned yourself to give yourself the best odds that you can have at trying to win these sweepstakes.  Now what do you do?  Please do not think that just because you entered the sweepstakes that your job is over and you can go about your normal business.  In fact, now is the time in which the real work has to be done.

Entering all of the different sweepstakes was just half the work, and now you have to see if you have won anything. (I should mention that even before you start entering the sweepstakes you should start an excel sheet in which you can keep track of all the different sweepstakes that you will enter.  When you enter a sweepstakes, you should go to the official rules to see what date it ends and what date the prize is announced.  You should then go ahead and mark it down on the excel sheet.  You should also put each sweepstakes on a separate line so you will not confuse end dates of different sweepstakes.)   On the date in which the company or companies of the sweepstakes that you entered announce their prize winners, you should be on the Internet to see if you have won anything.  If you are not on the internet, you will not know if your name was announced as a winner in any of the sweepstakes.

If you have won anything, it is your job to contact the company or companies.  Usually you have to contact the company or companies within a couple of days or within a week at the most.  The company will not contact you.  I repeat they WILL NOT contact you.  If you fail to contact the companies within the respective amount of time that they say in the official rules, they will declare someone else as the winner, and you will miss out on the prize.

Let’s assume though that you do get in contact with the company within the respective period of time. You’ll have to give your address, your phone number and some other information to actually get the prize delivered to you.  Now the question is once you get the prize delivered to you, what will you do with your sweepstakes winning?

Of course anything tangible like a TV or a car, you can not give away.  Why would you want to anyway?  I mean if you entered a sweepstakes in order to have the chance to win a new flat screen TV or a new luxury car, wouldn’t you want to keep it.  I know I would.  I suppose you could sell it to get some money for it, but do you really want to if you went through all the trouble of just entering the sweepstakes?

However there is one prize in which you could do many things with, and that prize is cash.  You can spend it, save it or both.  However most people just spend it.  I mean some cash prizes are just too small to save any of it.  For example a cash prize of $50 or $100 is just too small to save, so I think you should spend it.  However I am talking about prizes that are in the thousands of dollars.

Of course, you have to give a portion of the prize to the IRS, but after the IRS gets their portion, there is still enough money to spend some and save the rest.  Like I said before, this is what I think you should do. I hear too many stories of people who win thousands, hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars and are broke within a few years.  They spend all of their money on a nice house (and in some cases more than one house), nice cars, nice vacations and a ton of other things I can’t even think of.  Rather than spending on these extremely nice luxuries, they could have earned interest in the bank.  Ok yes I understand buying a nice house and a nice car, but if you win a cash prize of one million dollars, you do not go out and buy a $1,000,000 house because then you have no money left over.

Even before people decide what to do with their potential sweepstakes winnings and sometimes even before people enter sweepstakes, many think that the sweepstakes are scams and are just a way for companies to get your information.  However let me assure you that these sweepstakes are legitimate, and that the companies that offer these sweepstakes would not risk their hard earned reputation by throwing a fake sweepstakes.

In fact for those people who do not believe that these sweepstakes are real, let me tell you a story about someone who emailed me saying that she had a won a trip to New York City from a sweepstakes that she read about on my site.   This person was a stay at home mom who was browsing the Internet one day for ways to win a free trip.  She happened to stumble onto this site, and entered many of the vacation and trip sweepstakes.  She kept track of the different sweepstakes that she entered, and made sure to check back to see if she had won anything on the day winners were announced.  Anyway to make a long story short, she won a trip for herself and a guest to New York City for five nights, and the sponsor of the sweepstakes put her and her guest up in the Marriott hotel for the duration of the trip.  This story should ease some of your nerves about how legitimate these sweepstakes are.

If you are scared to give out your information and if my previous story did not ease your nerves at all, let me offer you an alternative.  Blog giveaways, which are giveaways sponsored by different blogs or websites, on my giveaway linky are totally legitimate.  An example of a blog giveaway that I sponsor from time to time is one in which you can win a $25 gad card.  Now even though these blog giveaways offer a much lower monetary value than sweepstakes, they are much easier to win and do not require you to give all the information that a sweepstakes does.

In sum, both sweepstakes and blog giveaways are legitimate, but it is just a matter of deciding which one you feel more comfortable entering.

 

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