“Jane said it was a Brisbane number, and asked did I want her to answer it? And I’d jokingly replied, well you’d better answer it, they’re drawing the house today,” Michael said.
The off-hand joke turned into pure disbelief for the couple, when Jane answered the call to discover Mater Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Nigel Harris, on the other end of the line.
Via speaker phone, Michael and Jane learnt they had just been drawn the lucky winners of Mater Prize Home lottery No. 279—an incredible $1.6 million first prize package; including a waterfront home on the Gold Coast, plus $100,000 worth of gold bullion.
After the call, “I must’ve checked the website, I don’t know how many times, whilst we were driving and it had “coming soon, coming soon”, and finally it popped up “Winner: Old bar” and I think that’s when we thought…it could be real,” Jane said.
Michael signed up to the Mater Prize Home VIP Club back in 2013, at a shopping centre one Christmas. For him, the decision to join was personal, and clinched by the opportunity to support vital medical research.
“I bought the tickets not so much hoping to win—well you always hope you win—but to help with research, as we’d lost my mother to Breast cancer”
“I thought ah well, a $30 book, it’s like a dollar a day,” Michael said.
Although Michael had thought a win to be far-fetched, he still recalls an inkling he’d had, and shared with his family about lottery No. 279.
“I remember opening up the brochure and asking them, what do you think of this house? I’m going to win it this month!”, he said.
Being self-employed, Michael is now looking forward to retiring with the financial freedom afforded to him by this life-changing win.
"Working for yourself, you have to pay your own Super, and once I turned 50, it’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot. I haven’t got many years left, and I don’t have much Super. This (win) took a bit of a weight off.”
“We used to joke that we'd retire in a tent...It's all a little bit overwhelming. It’s still sinking in. It (winning) means financial security, and not having to worry about the future".
For over 60 years, the Mater Prize Home lottery has been making dreams come true for some of our luckiest supporters who have won amazing million dollar prize home packages. Like Michael, you too, could be our next lucky winner. Buy your tickets today for the chance to secure your own financial future!