Stacy, who initially kept her Smart Home, enjoyed one vacation there with family before deciding the job offer back in Wisconsin was too good to pass up. “I thought it would be nice to keep the home, that maybe my sister and her husband could live there and rent it from us,” she says, “but financially that was not the best thing for us either.” By Christmas, she had sold the house, furniture and all.
2017 Smart Home winner Stacy Bolder picking up her new Mercedes-Benz SUV at the dealership in Appleton, Wisconsin.
She did, however, keep the car, a brand-new Mercedes-Benz SUV, but even that posed somewhat of a problem. “I felt self-conscious about driving it in Tomahawk. I went round and round with my friends and they’re like, Keep the car, you need to keep the car!” says Stacy. “I’m really into cars but I never thought in a million years I would even test drive car like that.”
The sale of the house allowed Stacy and her husband to buy a new home in Wisconsin, pay off their debts, invest money in a retirement account, and contribute to college funds for their two boys, one of whom was already attending. “When I won I knew, regardless of whether I kept the house or not, I was so grateful because this is a life-changing event for myself and family,” she says. “Being a teacher, I wasn’t raking in the dough. To be in a position where retirement, at some point, actually looks feasible is incredible.”