03/18/2016

Your buddy accidentally makes a hole-in-one with what you think is one of the luckiest shots of his golfing life and, as a witness, you’re rewarded with a cold brew after the round.

A PGA Tour pro expertly carves his 7-iron tee shot 177-yards in the air, it lands on the green, takes one hop, runs into the hole for an ace and, even if you didn’t know where this week’s tournament was, you’re rewarded with a year’s worth of mortgage payments.

Which scenario is likely?

Realistically? Neither.

But if you want a chance at winning a year’s-worth of mortgage payments it doesn’t cost you any money to register for it in a sweepstakes at PGATour.com. If you win, good for you! If you don’t win, nothing changes except you might get some new marketing emails.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sh_dTShjrr8

Here’s the deal: The PGA Tour’s Quicken Loans Hole-in-One Sweepstakes is awarding up to $24,000 in annual mortgage payments to one “First Prize Winner” for each hole-in-one hit by a PGA pro in 32 select events this season (pretty much every tournament through the Tour Championship except the majors – list at this link).

Each time a pro makes an ace, one lucky entry wins the amount of their monthly mortgage payment, up to a maximum of $2,000 principal and interest.  (There’s some provision for renters who win as well, but it’s not completely clear from the website explanation what the winning payout is for non-mortgage holders.)

So far this year in six tournaments since the sweepstakes started in February at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, there have been six holes-in-one. The mortgage sweepstakes winners – with last initial rather than full name – are listed at PGATour.com along with video of three of the aces, link here.

This is the third year of the Quicken Loans Hole-in-One Sweepstakes sponsorship and in a press release in February the company noted that they have “awarded more than 600 monthly mortgage payments through the program.”  I’m no mathematician but, with 12 monthly mortgage due dates on my calendar, I calculate there have been 50 winners entering the 2016 sweepstakes.

The release doesn’t give a total dollar amount for the 50 winners’ mortgage payments, but even at the minimum payout of $6,000 annually (a monthly mortgage of $500) my calculator says that’s at least $300,000 dollars paid out. (If every winner had the maximum allowable $2,000 a month mortgage, Quicken Loans’ payout would be $1.2 million.)

There’s also a way someone who is registered for the sweepstakes can win $1 million dollars, but it requires a hole-in-one on the par-3 10th hole at Congressional Country Club during the Quicken Loans National June 23 – 26.

The $1 million dollar giveaway didn’t happen during the first two years of the program, odds are it probably won’t happen this time either.

Then again, it might be even less likely that one of your golfing buddies is going to make an ace this summer and buy you a cold one.