DANVILLE, Calif. – Susan Wells was thrilled to learn she'd won a $2 million house in a raffle days after her husband had been laid off from his job.
"I'm floored," said Wells, who bought the ticket as a surprise to celebrate the couple's 16th anniversary. "I can't believe this has happened. Needless to say, my husband is very surprised."
The house is in upscale Marin County, just north of San Francisco. The couple already own a home in Danville, a suburb south of San Francisco, and if they don't want to move they have the option of $1.2 million in cash.
They're still deciding what do, but Brad Wells, who had been a sales executive for a Silicon Valley high-tech company, said the winnings are definitely a boost.
"I got laid off on Wednesday and the company went bankrupt on Friday," he said. The couple got word of their win on Saturday. "It's been a really rough ride for the last year. This gives us an unbelievable lift."
The raffle was held by Community Action Marin, which netted about $1.3 million, down from $2 million last year, the first time the event was held.
"In this economy, we're still very pleased," said Russ Hamel, director of development for the group, a private social services organization.
There were 29,000 tickets sold and prizes in addition to the dream house included $200,000 in cash.
Susan Wells said the couple is celebrating by having dinner with their neighbors.
"We're bringing a very good bottle of champagne," she said.