Saving up for a vacation, a down payment or a solid emergency fund? Pick the money savings challenge that fits your situation and start saving! It’s easy, everyone can do it, you just have to go for it!
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Saving $1,000, $5,000 or even $10,000 in just 1 year might sound extreme, but I’m certain that you can do this if you really go for it! With good planning and budgeting, your goals are definitely within reach in just 52 weeks!
Make your goals visible
Whatever money savings challenge you pick, make sure to have your goals in sight. What are you saving the money for? Make it visible with pictures, texts or quotes and hang it on a place where you see it every day to stay motivated. For example on your fridge.
Before you start
It’s a smart move to make sure you are ready for a big challenge. If you don’t have an emergency fund in place, you can start by doing the $1,000 challenge first.
In the resource library you can find printables to save $1,000 in just 1, 3 or 6 months.
It’s also wise to pay off debt before saving $10,000. Getting rid of your debt first, especially the ones with high interest rates, will also save you a lot of money. So the money savings challenge will become a lot easier if you have less interest to pay towards debt collectors.
How to start
You might be living paycheck to paycheck at the moment and think that this isn’t for you. To be able to save a big amount like $10,000 in 52 weeks, you need to start gaining insight into your income and expenses.
Write down all of your income and expenses:
- Start with the household expenses like your mortgage or rent, your insurances, utilities, etc. It’s easiest to calculate everything to monthly numbers to get a proper overview.
- Add the flexible expenses, like groceries, eating out and everything that you buy during the month.
- Don’t forget the little things you spend money on, like a pen, a small toy, coffee, a snack or whatever you’ve bought. The little expenses can add up very quickly!
- Write down your income. For most people this is just their weekly or monthly salary. But maybe you also have a side hustle, income from investments or other forms of income.
- Keep the list up to date and write down everything you spend money on or earned money for and make it a habit to keep track of everything.
How to succeed your money savings challenge
When you’ve got an overview of your income and expenses, you can look at your options to save money. Spending less or earning more money will help you succeed. It’s also good to think about your current money mindset and if you should change that.
To help you getting started, here are some ideas for you:
- Go trough your house to look for items you don’t use anymore and sell them.
- Is your grocery bill pretty high every month? Look for options to lower that bill and you can easily save hundreds of dollars.
- Check with friends or people in your neighborhood if they need someone to walk the dog sometimes.
- Look for someone in your town that needs a nanny in the evenings or weekends.
- Walk or take the bike to work instead of paying for the bus or for gas.
- Eat out less this year.
- Do a no spend month.
- Check your thermostat: you can save up to 5% in heating costs for every degree you lower your thermostat between 60 and 70 degrees.
- Fill in online surveys.
The different options for a money savings challenge
There are numerous ways to save money in 52 weeks. I listed 3 different money savings challenge options for you to choose from. This way you can do the challenge that’s the best fit for your situation:
Money savings challenge #1: Save the same amount each week
If you can think of some ways to save money each and every week or earn some extra money every week, you might want to save the same amount all 52 weeks.
Money savings challenge #2: Start high and save less every week
Personally I prefer the option where you start with the biggest amounts to save first, because:
- Your motivation is at it’s highest when you are just starting, so you are really motivated and creative to find ways to spend less or earn more to save the right amount each week.
- In the beginning it is easier to save larger amounts of money when you go trough your house to find stuff you don’t need anymore to sell.
- Seeing your saved amount go up really fast in the beginning is really motivating to keep going.
Money savings challenge #3: Pick how much you can save each week
If you have a flexible income or lots of flexible expenses, it might be the best pick for you to choose every week what amount you can save. Just make sure to tick off a box every week to stay on track.
How much money do you want to save in 1 year?
I made this table to give you a good overview on what you need to save daily, weekly or monthly to reach your goals:
|One Year Goal||Daily||Weekly||Monthly|
|$1,000||$ 2.74||$ 19.23||$ 83.33|
|$2,500||$ 6.85||$ 48.08||$ 208.33|
|$5,000||$ 13.70||$ 96.15||$ 416.67|
|$7,500||$ 20.55||$ 144.23||$ 625.00|
|$10,000||$ 27.40||$ 192.31||$ 833.33|
I made some printables for you with different options to choose from. And if you want to challenge yourself again after a year of saving, you can just print it out again and start a new challenge.
The printables can be found in the resource library.
Bonus challenge: compete with someone else
While a savings challenge is fun on your own, it can also be very motivating to compete with a friend or family member.
Who can spend the least amount of money this week/month or earn the most from side hustles in a week/month?
The one who did best gets to choose an activity to do together or with the whole family. Now don’t waste all of your saved money for this activity ;)
There are lots of fun activities to do that won’t cost much, for example:
- Go to the beach
- Take the bike or go on a hike
- Have a board game night
- Play soccer in the park
- Create an obstacle course
- Write stories together or create a comic book
Go for it
Where there’s a will, there’s a way. So write down your goals and keep them in mind while saving.
I love to hear what you are saving for!