The author enjoys dreaming about what he can do with tons of money.
What Can You Do With a Million Dollars?
It's a classic question: what would you do with a million dollars? After all, that is a lot of money. Though a million certainly doesn't go as far these days as it used to, there are still a number of things you can do with this amount of dough. Whether you just cashed in your latest stock options, hit the big jackpot at Las Vegas, or are burning a hole in your pocket with your late uncle’s bequest, here are ten suggestions on where to spend your money.
1. Invest in a Swanky New York City Apartment ($1.1 million)
For a million buckaroos, you can buy a one bedroom/one bath apartment in Manhattan. The Hudson River, Times Square, Central Park, and views of Statue of Liberty will be right at your doorstep! Maintenance charges can run from $700 a month up, however, so make sure you have an income to support this lifestyle.
2. Buy a Lush Private Island
If you're really looking to get off the grid, you can use your riches to buy yourself an island and get away from it all. From a move-in ready island on the coast of Nicaragua to an undeveloped enclave in French Polynesia, there are plenty of places where you can find some sea, sunshine, and silence. Just make sure you have enough money leftover to get there—you'll need to charter a boat just to get groceries!
3. Drive a Fancy Sports Car
It's a classic luxury purchase and the dream of little boys and girls everywhere. With a million dollars, you can buy a McLaren Senna, complete with transparent doors, 789 horsepower, and 590 torque. If you want a more environmentally friendly car, the Jaguar C-X75 Supercar sells for a cool $1.1 million. It has a carbon-fiber body with a boosted internal combustion engine that can do 0 to 100 mph in under 6 seconds. Plus, it’s a hybrid that can run up to 30 miles on electric power alone.
4. Buy a Painting by a Famous Artist
Jeune Femme a L’Ombrelle (Young Lady With the Umbrella) by Auguste Renoir is an impressionist painting from 1868 that was auctioned by Sotheby’s in 2009 for $1.1 million. The price included the buyer’s premium. Granted, this was an auction item, but it does show that artwork by a master is still within reach.
5. Wear a Gorgeous Piece of Jewelry
Got diamonds on your mind? You're in luck—for just under a million dollars, you can buy the Mikimoto Empress Necklace ($996,000). It's a pink conch pearl necklace with 36.5 carats of diamonds set in platinum. If necklaces are not your style, you can also buy a luxury watch for a similar price: the Hublot Black Caviar Bang.
6. Get a Hold of Rare, Vintage Comics
If you're a superhero fan, the first Superman comic, Action Comics #1, was sold at Comic Connect in February 2010 for $1 million. Though it now sells for $3.2 million, this shows you that a rare, vintage comic is within your reach. As an added bonus, it can be resold in a few years for even more money!
7. Get the Latest Million-Dollar Tech
You could always buy a piece of tech that's worth a million dollars. For example, in 2010, the luxury accessory designer Gresso launched the Luxor Las Vegas Jackpot Cellphone, priced at a cool $1 million. It had a pure gold case encrusted with black diamonds, and the back panel was made of 200-year old African blackwood. Each key was manufactured from a single crystal of sapphire. Though the technology of this phone is now out-of-date, you can buy something with more modern technology if you want—a personalized, diamond-encrusted iPhone also goes for one million.
8. Plan a Lavish Getaway
One million dollars can pay for a stay at some of the most luxurious hotels in the world. For example, one night in the Royal Penthouse Suite at the President Wilson Hotel in Geneva, Switzerland, costs $80,000, meaning you could stay there for 12 days and get access to four bedrooms, six bathrooms, and a gorgeous lakeside view. There is also room service is available 24 hours a day!
9. Hire Domestic Staff
A million dollars is enough for two years of service for a domestic staff of five. You wouldn't be skimping on your employees, either: the highest annual salaries for employees with at least two years of on-the-job experience are: $180,000 for a supervisory butler, $70,000 for a valet, $80,000 for a private chef, $150,000 for a personal secretary, and $80,000 for a housekeeper. After getting all of your chores out of the way, you could spend your time doing what you like to do instead!
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10. Revamp Your Look
If you have a million bucks, why not look it, too? From $10,000 suits to $50,000 dresses, you could easily blow through million dollars just revamping your wardrobe. If you prefer simple clothes and want just one extravagant statement piece, put your best foot forward and buy yourself a pair of $1 million dollar shoes, like these diamond-studded Stuart Weitzman stilettos.
6 Smart Ways to Invest a Million Dollars
Though cars, jewelry, and luxury vacations are attractive, they might not be the best ways to spend your money—after all, all that glitters is not gold. If you want to maximize your million bucks and put it to good use, here are the best ways to blow through your cash.
1. Pay Off Debts
The longer your debt stays unpaid in full, the more interest you're going to have to pay. Whether it's a student loan, a mortgage, or an old business expenditure, paying it off as quickly as possible will minimize the amount you'll have to pay over time.
2. Keep an Emergency Fund
Earthquakes, fires, job layoffs—you never know what's going to happen in life. Don't quit your day job as soon as you get a million dollars—keep a portion aside for you to use in the event of a rainy day. At least a year's worth of monthly expenses for you and your family is a worthwhile investment toward your long-term wellbeing
3. Create More Steady Income and Start a Business
Have you ever dreamed of being your own boss? A million dollars could be the capital you need to jump-start your very own business. Whether it's a brick-and-mortar store, the taco truck of your dreams, or an online import-export business, you might as well use your newfound money to build your career and follow your passion.
4. Save for Retirement
You don't want to work for the rest of your life, do you? Depending on your age, your family size, and where you live, one million dollars can be enough money to retire modestly.
5. Buy Real Estate
Real estate is a relatively secure investment that usually pays off in the long run—renting an apartment is basically throwing money down the drain. If you don't already own a home to live in, a million dollars is enough to buy you a modest home in most parts of the United States.
If you already own your house, then you can use the million dollars to buy houses, fix them up, and sell them at higher prices. Or, you can buy a rental property and use it to generate a (mostly) passive monthly income while you rent it out. Sometimes you need to spend money to make money!
5. Invest in the Stock Market
It's a risky business, but you never know—you could either become the next Warren Buffet or lose it all. While it's unlikely that putting all your money in stocks will turn you from a millionaire into a billionaire, stocks can pay off in the long run, especially if you have more capital to start with.
6. Give It Away
What better way to spend your money than to give it to someone who needs it more than you? Whatever the cause—be it cancer research, homelessness, or education—you can be assured that you will feel good about the donation you make. Giving away your riches is an investment worth making toward both the state of the world and your happiness. And, if you can't find a cause you care about enough, you can always just donate it to me!
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
Question: How much is an island that is private?
Answer: As stated in the article, you can get one for about a million dollars.
© 2012 Aurelio Locsin
Farrah Young from Lagos, Nigeria on June 16, 2020:
Great tips. For a million bucks, I would create a string of passive incomes and that would also include investing in real estate.
Marlene Bertrand from USA on May 26, 2020:
It was so much fun fanaticizing about what I could do with a million dollars. I like how you balance this article out with more practical things as well.
Alina on May 14, 2020:
Love these videos. Rock on
Audrey Hunt from Pahrump NV on December 18, 2019:
I once had a Steinway parlor grand piano. Being a professional pianist, and teacher, this was a dream come true. Then, in 2005 I sold my piano and miss it so much. So, if I had a million dollars, this would be the first thing I would buy.
kole on October 29, 2019:
kate we are also doing a speech on this. lol XD
N.K.Asokan on September 22, 2019:
Can you financialy one million help me.
Kate on September 17, 2019:
I was searching this up for my speech
Rihanna on September 04, 2019:
I would buy nothing bc I will never own that much anyway
your daday on July 29, 2019:
what about donating to poor people
yourmum on March 18, 2019:
this did not help me ugh
Readontheroad on October 23, 2017:
That was very interesting, thank you!
I'd be very interested in more like this, for example, things that cost different amounts. The staff of five was very interesting.
How much does it cost to buy and keep a private jet? If you want it to be ready at a moment's notice, how many people does that mean? Things like that...
Anyway, thanks again,
idigwebsites from United States on June 17, 2013:
NYC apartment... like to stay in the city that never sleeps... heheheeh. :D
Jennifer Arnett from California on June 17, 2013:
I'd go for the New York City apartment because it is the most likely object to appreciate in value. If you go for the car, it might crash and leave you with nothing. If you go for the necklace or cellphone, they can be stolen or taxed with a 28% tax. However, you could rent out the apartment for the rest of your life, and sill have the principle, plus appreciation. Very fun hub!
Kas from Bartlett, Tennessee on June 17, 2013:
I want to buy the lagoon. I can set myself up a nice little spot there and bring my own food.....or even just go fishing! Great hub Alocsin and it did make me think. Loved it, voting up, and I'm sharing!
Maree Michael Martin from Northwest Washington on an Island on November 27, 2012:
Okay, now after reading the comments, I want to give the Jag back and buy the island instead where we can live to the end of our days dreaming up ways like this to give it all to charity now that we are living in luxury. Oh wait, a million dollars for an apartment? Doesn't go far, does it?
mbergo from Porto Alegre, Brazil on August 26, 2012:
Voted up. I would also go for #2. With 1 million one could also buy time - put the money in Johnson and Johnson and live of the dividends.
monicamelendez from Salt Lake City on July 17, 2012:
Too bad the poll doesn't give you more than one option. :) I would take the island first and then the apartment!
Aurelio Locsin (author) from Orange County, CA on July 02, 2012:
Honestly, John Sarkis, I wouldn't buy the Jag either. I have a friend who has one and it's mostly in the garage because it's always broken.
kikalina from Europe on July 02, 2012:
I go for the car :)
John Sarkis from Winter Haven, FL on July 02, 2012:
Alocsin, you never cease to surprise me. What a brilliant hub this one is.
FYI: I wouldn't buy the Jag, because I had one that cost me 5% or so of the one you mention in your article and had to get rid of it because it gave me lots of trouble and I could never afford it!
The island in Belize sounds out of this world...would buy that if I had the money.
kelleyward on July 02, 2012:
Alocsin it's always nice to dream. Not sure what I'd do with 1 million dollars but you've given me something to think about. Voted up and interesting! Kelley
Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on July 02, 2012:
This is an impressive list. I wish I could buy all for 1 million! I would go for the island. Nice to let us at least dream about it.
Up, interesting and shared on FB.
Donna Hilbrandt from Upstate New York on July 02, 2012:
I love this. I would definitely go for the NYC apartment. Maybe the island, but I fear it would wash away in the next hurricane with my luck. I have to say, I don't get the cell phone. That is just an obscene waste of cash! Voted up.
Mary Hyatt from Florida on July 02, 2012:
My check to you for one million is in the mail. Please don't hold your breath! I'd sure like to see that phone...
I voted this UP, etc. And I shared this one.
I hope you got a BIG payout from HP.
Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on July 02, 2012:
I voted for the island, although 2 years of service by a domestic staff of 5 sounds pretty good, too! Fun to dream, isn't it? Voted up and SHARED!
L M Reid from Ireland on June 30, 2012:
What an interesting hub. Imagine spending One million dollars on a phone - INSANE! It is nice to dream though. I have already been dreaming of what I would do If I won the lottery for years lol.
Shared on Twitter
Aurelio Locsin (author) from Orange County, CA on May 17, 2012:
Thanks Ruchira. Don't we all wish we had a million dollars!
Ruchira from United States on May 14, 2012:
This is such a fun hub, alocsin.
I am not sure what I will buy when and IF I get a million dollars...lol
I would rather invest that money and sit on it...lol
voted up as interesting and funny hub.
Aurelio Locsin (author) from Orange County, CA on February 28, 2012:
Good point, Madurai!
Madurai from Online on February 26, 2012:
Alocsin , very good suggestion, but in my opinion, if I had one million dollars I will not have time to visit Internet. Lol...thanks for sharing:)
Aurelio Locsin (author) from Orange County, CA on February 12, 2012:
You have a good heart Peggy W to think of charities and helping the less fortunate with the money. Thanks for stopping by.
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on February 11, 2012:
I voted for the "generous donation to the author." Do you take IOU's? Haha!
Interesting comparisons of what that kind of money can buy. Left out are the ways to help other people. Wonder how much mosquito netting or digging of fresh water wells for people who need it...or countless other charities that could be helped with money like that? You can tell how my mind operates.
Up and interesting votes!
epigramman on January 29, 2012:
...well I have a friend who is worth more than a million dollars - actually she is priceless - and if we're lucky she may show up here on your comment space
....and yes my friend this will get all of my pals on Facebook all excited which is the reason why I will be posting it there today on my homepage with a direct link back here - lake erie time ontario canada 10:17am
macquelinedc from Philippines on January 27, 2012:
The apartment in New York will be great, if ever I win the lottery that will be the first thing I'll buy. Thanks for the good hub.
Aurelio Locsin (author) from Orange County, CA on January 26, 2012:
Don't forget to tip the writer, if you buy any of these items, since I'm not getting a commission.
Cindy Murdoch from Texas on January 26, 2012:
If I'm going to dream, it may as well be big ... an island it is! Thanks for SHARING!
lisa.bom on January 25, 2012:
I love hubs like these. I better get working on my millions. I could use the island.
Christopher Wanamaker from Arizona on January 25, 2012:
Man, a million dollars doesn't seem to go very far haha. However, I am sure that Jaguar is well worth the price!
Alecia Murphy from Wilmington, North Carolina on January 25, 2012:
#1 for sure. One of the greatest cities in the world and a great view. Cool hub!
WD Curry 111 from Space Coast on January 25, 2012:
It is a toss up between the island and the domestic staff.
Veronica Roberts from Ohio, USA on January 25, 2012:
I will take #2. Do you think they'd take cash? ;)
Voted up and awesome!
Cynthia Calhoun from Western NC on January 25, 2012:
Haha...though it seems like I often hear that when people win significant amounts of money, they often don't know what to do with it and then...squander it away. :( Oh well...voted up!
Arlene V. Poma on January 25, 2012:
I'd like a million to play the stock market. If my decisions took a dump, who cares? Or I could be like some of my family members and play the slots all night in Tahoe until it's gone. Same thing. Maybe throw the dice, instead. But it would also pay for a penthouse, meals, and a concert while I was there. Just for me and my honey because I like to share. WooHoo!
Tammy from North Carolina on January 25, 2012:
Awesome list! I want all of the above, but I will settle for the Jaguar. This is great and so much fun to dream about. Well done!
Cassandra Mantis from UK and Nerujenia on January 25, 2012:
I think I'd buy that New York Apartment! Second choice would be the Island in Belize! Think I'd need a seaplane to get to it! Can we get another Hub to put some dream airplanes in - please? LOL! Cheers!
It's nice to dream! :)
chamilj from Sri Lanka on January 25, 2012:
Nice options. Wish I will have $ 1 million soon. Hey nice hub! Voted up!
Aurelio Locsin (author) from Orange County, CA on January 25, 2012:
I'm glad you're all enjoying this little bit of fun. I actually wrote this in anticipation of my first HubPages payout, which should be happening next month.
Stacy Harris from Hemet, Ca on January 25, 2012:
Ha ha - this was too cool. Now I am wishing I had a million dollars so that I could get some of these things. On the other hand... some of it truly disturbs me. 65,000 for one night in what is literally a hotel. Yikes. And 80,000 for a housekeeper. Gee - and I went to school to scrap by... guess I am in the wrong industry.
What a fun hub. Voted up and funny. Thanks for SHARING!
cebutouristspot from Cebu on January 25, 2012:
Hmm 1 million dollars. I will buy a lot and make a condo :D I believe its the best thing you can give to your kids :D and yes I will also stay with hubpage its fun here and relaxing. Thanks for sharing
mljdgulley354 on January 25, 2012:
What an imagination alocsin. These are great ideas if you have a million dollars. Only thing is you could only buy one of them. Voted Up and Sharing.
Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on January 25, 2012:
I want the NYC apartment and I want it now!!:) What a fun hub! Way to go alocsin! Could you imagine how much cosmetic surgery one could get done with one million dollars! A LOT! lol Voted UP!
Aurelio Locsin (author) from Orange County, CA on January 25, 2012:
Well, you never know who might decide on the last option. Don't worry, I'll still keep writing for HubPages if that happens.
Zainnisar from Little Island, Heart. on January 25, 2012:
Cool, enjoyed up through my ears interesting stuff that you have put together and last voting option was a nice try but I guess people are more materialistic. lol
Thanks for Sharing Awesomeness. Voted and Shared.