Millionaires are happier

Back to humility: millionaire gives up wealth to be happy

In this world full of crises, conflicts and wars, there are still stories that are almost too good to be true. A man in his mid-30s discovered that money is not everything in life. And he has enough money, he's a millionaire. But he decides to part with his fortune, raffle his villa, donate the proceeds to a charity he founded - and become happy with a modest lifestyle. This is the story of Karl Rabeder, an Austrian who went out to do good.


Born in Linz, he got rich at a young age and owned a highly successful home accessories company until 2004. “But the money didn't make me happy, it's not my path in life,” says the 47-year-old. His change of heart began in 1998 on a five-star vacation in Hawaii: "We did everything, island hopping, helicopter flights, yacht tours, but I just felt like I was in a movie," he explains. "I suppose that has been dormant in me for a long time, that I thought:" This pursuit of wealth can't have been everything in life. "" But it took a few more years before this deep inner feeling was followed by tangible deeds.

While gliding in Argentina and Chile, the likeable entrepreneur with the round glasses finally came up with the brilliant idea: He wants to found a humanitarian organization that grants microcredits to small businesses in Latin America and thus brings sustainable aid to where it is needed. “The project is comparable to child sponsorship, people can give out small loans from 25 euros,” he explains. No sooner said than done: “MyMicrocredit” is born, and with it a second, a new, and a better life begins for Rabeder.

He gives up his company, invests the majority of his capital in the project and then looks for a way to get as many people as possible excited about his idea. “I asked myself: How can I reach as many people as possible who support my project? And that's when I came up with the idea of ​​the lottery. "

It's about Rabeder's beautiful villa in Telfs, 15 minutes from Innsbruck and 10 minutes from Seefeld. On 321 square meters of living space, the fully furnished house on a south-facing slope offers every luxury. Since March 1, 2009, Rabeder has been trying to sell a total of 21,999 lots at 99 euros each to interested parties on the website.

After the lottery was initially limited to Austria, it was mainly the Germans who finally got a taste for the strange game of chance: “So far we have sold a good half of all tickets, 90 percent of them to Germans,” says Rabeder. Because in Germany it is forbidden to bring one's property to the people in a raffle - but not to win a house abroad.

When all the tickets have been sold - or at a fixed date in the next few months - the winning ticket will be drawn under notarial supervision in Tyrol. The winner receives the entire property and does not even have to pay the ancillary costs. Rabeder wants to cover this with the lottery income and put the rest of the money into his foundation. "I am now choosing a life path in which I can use my money more sensibly and separate myself from my possessions," says the Austrian with a hint of relief in his voice. "It's just nice to be able to share."

In the future, he wants to live in a rented one to two-room apartment in Innsbruck or in a one-room wooden hut in the Tyrolean mountains and get by on a maximum of 1000 euros a month. And then he would like to travel, to distant countries - and to himself. “I would like to spend a few months in the Himalayas and in the South American Andes and just go. Just my backpack and me, ”he enthuses. “And I would like to cross a desert, it also has a symbolic character, has something of“ going on your way ”.” This should be spiritual journeys, where Rabeder wants to get by on two euros a day: “Then I'll just eat rice with rice, or with a few nuts or herbs in it. That's enough."