My 52 Week Money Challenge: How I Plan to Save $14,000 in 2016

posted by admin on 29 Dec 2015 63 Comments

Hi Y’all! Can you believe New Year is just a FEW days away? Are you excited for 2016? Do you have any particular goals in mind?

Well, I have been busy trying to plan my 2016, especially financially. I have already created my Budget Binder 2016 and my Weekly Monthly Planner for 2016. I am starting yet another planner, a 52 Week Money Challenge, where I plan on saving certain amount of money each week. Set it aside, and increment the amount for next week as well.

52 Week Money Challenge

I came across 52 Week Money Challenge a lot this year, mostly on Pinterest. It seems to be very effective plan, so I decided to give this a try. My goal for each week is going to be an increment of $10, so by the end of 2016, I will be saving appr. $14,310. Sounds reasonable enough, right?

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Here’s my document where I have written down the numbers with increments of $10 for each week. The printable for this incremental amount comes prefilled with the amount that needs to be saved.

52 Week Money Challenge Prefilled

Download Here

Amount you want to use for every week is totally up to you. You can start from $1 or even go up to $50. You should be fairly comfortable with the amount you want to use, because the way this system works is, you are going to have huge amount that needs to be saved towards the end of the year.

That time also happens to be around December and Christmas. Time when most of us find ourselves on tight budget. So to make most of this system, if you want you can reverse the chart and start your year from the amount you are supposed to save at the end of the year.

Related: How to Save Money on Grocery Shopping

So, for instance, taking my spreadsheet above, you will be putting your first amount in your savings account is going to be $530, next week will be $520 and so on. You can also pick any amount from other weeks, save that much in your account and mark that week as done. Simple!

Here’s another document that I created where you can fill the amount you are comfortable with. This printable comes with prefilled dates and that’s it. Just add up the amount you will be saving and fill the spreadsheet.

52 Week Money Challenge

Download Here

I am going to try and write a series of posts where I will post the amount I saved for each week. This way I will be able to track how I am doing with my savings goal for the year.

So, are you ready to save money in 2016? Come, let’s see if we can reach our respective set goals in 2016. Please share how much you are planning to save in the coming weeks and months.

Let’s say Goodbye to unwanted and unexpected expenses and say Hello to savings, and more savings!

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Comments (63)

  • Sounds like a good plan! It’s smart to regularly set aside savings–before you know it, the money will build up!

  • I’ve seen this a ton too. I think I’m going to try it as well. I like your $10 a week idea, that is totally doable.

    • True Leslie. It has become of the popular ways to save some money throughout the year. I wanted to do $25 at first, but it sounded like a lot towards the end of the year. So, I decided with $10 first, and see how it goes.

  • How awesome! We did something very similar a few years ago. I’m always game for saving money.
    Jaelan @ Making Mrs. M recently posted…How I Grew My Blog Over 300% in One YearMy Profile

  • Thanks for sharing! I really need a tool like this. Trying to get better at budgeting!
    Christy F recently posted…2016 GoalsMy Profile

    • Right Christy! I always feel better when I have things written down. This challenge will be a good reminder to keep saving money here and there as we through the week.

  • Great idea! I think I might try this this year! Thanks for sharing this!

  • Wow, good for you! This would be seriously amazing!
    Bri recently posted…Grey Bow SweaterMy Profile

  • Hi Kam,
    I have a cold, and today (Valentine’s Day) I spent most of the day in bed. I was exploring PINTREST and found your blog about the Challenge. I really like it! I definitely want to try it. I am thinking about maybe opening a different account
    for it, but I am not sure, it might not be worth it. Are you going to open a different account for it, or just put it in your regular savings account?
    Anyway, I would love to know how the plan is working for you! All the best for a fantastic 2016 full of savings!

    • I hope you feel better Alexandra. Last year I did the savings account, and set up the account so that certain set amount of money was being transferred from another account. This year I am going it simpler way. I set up a jar in my room, where I put amount of money that I’m comfortable with. For example, I added $150 last week, and crossed off the $150 amount from my printable, that was next to April 8 week (my printable is prefilled in the post above). Next week I might do $30. That way if I am putting the bigger amount one week, it makes it convenient for me further down the weeks because I will be left with smaller amounts. I will post my latest printables after a few weeks as an example as to how I am doing till now. You can also set up the plan that you think will work out for you for the entire year. Hope I was able to answer your question. Please let me know if you have more questions. πŸ™‚

  • One of the best ideas I have read on money saving. Everyone should try this for once to save money.
    Robin Williams recently posted…A Guide to Online Payday Loan Lending Legislation in UtahMy Profile

    • Thanks Robin. It does work if you want to save money even a little amount at a time. Thanks for stopping by πŸ™‚

  • This seems like a wonderful way to build up a nest egg! I just hope that it will not be too hard for me to put away the larger amounts each week. I am going to try this though:)
    Dina | SavvyInTheKitchen recently posted…Chicken And DumplingsMy Profile

    • Thanks Dina. Let me know how it works out for you. You can adjust the amount as you go, with the one that you are comfortable with. Whole idea is to save something as the weeks go by. Thanks for stopping by πŸ™‚

  • I like the idea of this, but in the month of December you will be depositing $2,550. I’m not sure how feasible that is for most people, especially during the holidays.

    • That’s true Paul. But you can adjust the amount by saving it in another month and allocating much lesser amount for the busiest month aka December or holiday month.

  • i wanna know where you people are working that you can afford to set
    aside over 2000 in dec I don’t even make 2000 a month this is totally undoable for single mothers

    • I agree with Tracy. The average person isn’t making enough to save that much per month especially if you have children. Where the hell do you all work so I can apply for a position. I’m credentialed lol.

      • Good points Tracy and TJ πŸ™‚ You don’t have to save huge amount though. You can start from as little as a $1, and go up as you feel comfortable.

  • Why not just save $1000 each month for 12 months? You can have it withdrawn automatically into a 401 or 403b account. This way you don’t have to get used to saving more and more each month. It will be harder to cheat or give up when the amount changes which is what will usually happen while using a chart. I’ve done this for 5 years. 12000 x 5 = 60,000

    • That’s a great plan KJ. Thanks for sharing. Kudos for doing such an awesome job on saving money through your bank account.

  • Easier said then done when a single mom and pay daycare expenses that are more than my rent. I live pay check to pay check. What do you do for a living?

    • Hi Jess. Totally understand. Daycare expenses and other monthly bills can really add up. If you are looking into saving money, you can start from as little as $1. This way you will be looking at depositing $52 in the month of December and end up saving app $1400 for that year. As for what I do, I am an IT consultant and a Freelancer.

  • Wow! This sounds really interesting. I am sure I can manage the firs few weeks. The real challenge will come when it comes to putting down larget amounta above 100.
    Esther recently posted…How to Decorate Your House on a Shoestring BudgetMy Profile

    • True Esther. You can totally adjust the amount to what you feel comfortable with. I am trying to challenge myself to save bigger amount every year and see if I can go through with saving that much every week. Let me know if you tried and how it worked out for you.

  • I’m with Paul and Tracey– where do all you people that say you’re going to do this work???? I totally need to change jobs!! How is it feasible to set aside that much each week in November and December!??!!?? I think if I had that much “extra” money each week I wouldn’t have a money problem to start with and my savings and 401k would be busting at the seams.
    Yes, I know, I could do smaller amounts. But I’m just sitting here perplexed at all the people that say they are going to do it

    • You’re right Myra. It can be a challenge, but that’s what makes it exciting. I am trying to switch higher amounts with other months so that I can put away lesser amount for the month of November and December. It’s just to hold myself accountable. I’m not even sure if I will be able to put away that big amount in those months, but I’ll try my best by cutting and reducing my expenses from other areas and making more money from my IT consultancy and freelancing projects.

      • Natasha said on

        I’m curious as to why everyone thinks that you have to spend so much money in Nov. and Dec. even with children. Yes, I know they are holiday months, but you still don’t have to go broke for everyone else. Kids can only play with 1 toy at a time! This can be done, if you seriously want to do it. My children have a budget for gifts,if they don’t spend it all what ever is left is theirs. Teach them early about the value of a dollar and they will learn to love watching it grow. My goal for 2016 was $10000.00 as of today I am $2500.00 away from completing that goal! Yayyyyy Me!

        • That’s so awesome Natasha. So proud of you. No matter how big or small the amount you wish to save, but I love to see perseverance and persistence when trying to save money and you actually reach your set goal.

          You’re so right. Try to reduce the gift amounts and money spent in these holiday months. There’s so much you can do to cut back from other expenses. Thanks for the inspiration! πŸ™‚

  • I only earn $500 a week, of that, $275 is rent …how do I save what I need to after week 22? …Let alone eat etc. I’m stumped lol

    • lol Janae. You can start with the amount you are comfortable with. That was me when I just started with this kind of project. I try to outdo myself from the previous year. If you start doing the challenge in the coming year, you will find yourself looking to save more the following year. So try and see if it works out for you. Start with $1 for every month. That way you will have to deposit $52 in the month of December and you will end up saving app $1400 by the end of the year.

  • I like the idea of making the larger amounts when you have the money. As long as you make a deposit each week you don’t have to make all the $500+ deposits during the holidays. I was also thinking of doing it back wards, taking care of the large ones first, around tax refund time maybe??

    • Exactly Jen. I have been switching the amounts around so much. I feel great when I can deposit the higher amount in the week I am not supposed to lol. Doing it in reverse order works great, I have seen many friends save huge amounts by doing it the other way round. πŸ™‚

  • This a great guide. Thank you for sharing. The principle can be applied to any savings amount. I am going to put some thought into how I can work this in my own household and employ the kids to help out. We want to take a family vacation next year. Right now my husband is on unemployment, so I think that this will give my family a fun goal to work towards as we find hope even during the hard times.

    I also will be using this as a guideline as my husband and I save money for rainy day expenses, too. Right now, we’re just ear marking any VA payments for his Post 9-11 GI Bill as savings. It’s slowly adding up. πŸ™‚

    • That’s a great idea Mandy. Involving children to save money is such an awesome and fun idea. They will get to learn the value of saving money in the long run. I am sure you will be able to save enough for your vacation next year. Please come back and let me know how it worked out for you and your family πŸ™‚

  • Stephanie said on

    She did say to do the amount that works for you. I choose not to go into debt around the holidays. I look at the real reason for it and celebrate. I have a personal issue with ‘the season of giving’. I think giving and caring is a lifestyle.

    Anyway, I know I can’t save that much ever in a month because I don’t make that much. It won’t stop me though. I might try saving in $5 increments a week until I get to $100 which would be by the end of October. That would give me $2100. I would put it in an IRA or pay a bill I don’t want to carry into the new year.

  • Sand said on

    Sounds good , but what about the working poor who only make 13,000.00 a year

  • Kristie said on

    i really am impressed how you take a goal that would be huge for anyone, and break it down to a managable process. If someone doesnt feel they can save that full amount they can at least appreciate the process and you gave an option that can be modified for each person’s individual goal. Nice job!

  • My problem is I only get paid once a month. 1500 permanent disability. How do I still save? Oh and two kid’s. No help from dad. Ty!

    • Hi Janna, you can start with very small amount. Even $1 would be good. All we want to do is save some amount, no matter how small or big.

  • This has been so challenging yet fun. My fiancΓ© and I are using ttthis challenge to pay for our wedding next year, but we have learned so much about us, team work and goal setting. We’ve decided to repeat this challenge for the next 5 years.

    • That’s so awesome Tasha. I love hearing stories like yours. It will be so much fun to have you join the challenge again next year. Congratulations on the upcoming nuptials. πŸ™‚

  • Thank you Gurk.☺️
    Something that helped us was turning the weekly payments into bi weekly payments since we are paid bi weekly. The week of Nov 11 payment was 470 and Nov 25 was 480 totaling 950. We split the 950 in half which made our individual payments 475 on the 25th.
    Another tip would be instead of trying to pay 475 out of one paycheck, I always save half of the payment and once the payment is due I add the other half.

    We have cut out or reduced a lot of things and really have to communicate and focus…Black Friday was calling my name, however after making the payment, other responsibilities no shopping for me and I’m ok with that. Start small and try 500 dollars a year. The goal is just to save.

    • Great tips Tasha. Perfect for someone looking to add structure or some kind of plan to their weekly or bi weekly savings.

      And what’s great is you held yourself back from shopping some more after adding the amount for that week. Black Friday can be so tempting lol. Simply awesome!

      Thanks for the inspiration for others looking to save even a small amount. πŸ™‚

  • Did anyone notice that the 52
    Week planner has 53 weeks listed? Also I dont get paid every
    week maybe their should be a
    26 pay period planner for those who are paid bo weekly

    • Hi Kmah. Thanks for noticing. But if you count from Jan1 – Jan8, that’s week one, Jan8 – Jan15 is week two. Similarly, Dec23 – Dec30 is week 52. It’s just the count that shows 53, but in total there are 52 weeks. Thanks for the feedback as well. I am planning the 52 week money challenge for 2017. I’ll keep in mind all the feedback in this post for the next year.

  • Planning to do this for 2017! Thank you so much & have a great holiday season

    • That’s awesome Siera. I have one planned for 2017 as well. Check it out on the blog. Have a great holiday season!

  • Hi Gurk, I’m really impressed at the amount of money you were able to save. I also completed the 52-week challenge this year (2016) but I started with $2. Surprisingly, for me the hardest part wasn’t coming up with the money, but either remembering to save each week or actually staying motivated throughout the entire year.

    What helped for me was to join some FB groups dedicated to the 52-week challenge. Getting support from other group members helped me push through entire year.

    For next year (2017) I’m trying to find a website dedicated to the 52-week challenge where I can take the challenge with other people. So far I’ve only come across https://www.money-challenge.com. I’m curious if you, or any of the commenters here, have heard of this site or use any other site? 2017 is only one week away so I have to find something fast!

    • Thanks Jerry! And $2 sounds amazing. I’m so glad you were able to complete the challenge this year. I am gearing up for 2017 as well. I have a new blog post up, and we are also running Money Challenge on our Facebook Group. It is listed in the new post as well.

      I haven’t heard of this site, but I use my printables to keep track of the amount every week. I stick it in my bedroom, so I do not forget to put away the money for the current week!

      Have a great 2017! πŸ™‚

  • Did you make it?

    • Yes Busi. It was very close though. Towards the end of the year, around holidays is when it gets tough.

      I had to hold back on lot of holiday shopping. We also tried to eat at home as much as possible, reduced our dining out from 3 times a month to 2. Saved on gas money by creating meal plan, and reducing the trips to grocery stores.

      All in all, it was a great experience. I look forward to doing it again in 2017.

      Did you do one in 2016? Are you planning one in 2017?

      • Glad to hear it is “doable” lol. Planning on 2017. Headachae is the massive debt i already have and collectors knocking on my door. Do you have anything that helps on structuring debt repayments too?

        • Hi Busi, I use a budget binder to keep check on my finances. I used to use the bullet journal and create my own must have fields. But now I use this budget binder: http://bit.ly/budget-binder.

          It has helped me with keeping my finances on track and in control. See if you can find something like this for the new year, and plan your months ahead of time. I try to plan for each week or month at a time.

          Good Luck and Best Wishes for 2017! πŸ™‚

  • Yeeeeaaaaa WE DID IT!!! What a great 2016 and we are onto
    2017. We are actually starting at the end (Dec 30) and working
    our way back to Jan!!

    All the best to everyone and thank you Gurk for all the encouragement.

    • So happy to hear / read that Tasha. Doesn’t it feel so wonderful? This one was a big one for me too, but all of us were in this together, and it was challenging, yet exciting.

      Thanks so much for the wonderful wishes. Starting from Dec 30 is a great idea. It will get so much easier towards the middle and end of the year.

      We have a new challenge posted for 2017. Check it out at: http://bit.ly/money-challenge-2017. There are $1, $2, $5 and $10 increment FREE printables available to download!

      Best wishes for 2017! πŸ™‚

  • I was inspired to create an app for this challenge. But only for android, a much pretty and modern version, completely free and no ads. You guys wanna check it out :). We can improve this by leaving feedbacks and such. http://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.kenma.iponchallenge

  • It’s now the middle of March 2017 and I am doing the $1 challenge twice one Jan-Dec and one Dec-Jan. It works out at $53 per week or $106 per fortnight and it’s working well. I’m an Aged Pensioner living in Australia. I’m really challenging myself to save $250 per month on top of this. So far I’m doing really well and if I manage to stick with it I’ll have saved nearly $6000 by the end of the year.

  • Look great plan! Will start following this. Let’s see if I can make it. thanks for the article. Let’s work out.

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