Save over P13,000 with this 52-week money challenge
Need a simple savings plan that will get you over P13,000 by the end of the year? Do this reverse 52-week money challenge. Now’s the perfect time to start it, while you’re working on your new year’s resolutions, and if you’re looking for a challenge that will benefit you in the long run, try this on for size.
The reverse 52-week money challenge is a variation on the popular “52-week money challenge,” where people save increasing amounts throughout the year. They start by saving $1 in the first week of the year, $2 the next, $3 after that, and so on, until they save $52 in the last week of the year and end up with $1,378 total. (Of course, we’re in the Philippines, so we’re changing that to P10 in the first week, P20 the second, until you’re saving P520 in the last week, for a total of P13,780 after 52 weeks.)
This plan sounds great, right? Well, yes — until you consider that it’s the last few months of the year that are the most expensive. You may not have P520 to put aside after you’ve bought all your Christmas gifts and noche buena supplies.
So to make things easier for you, there’s a tweak where instead of increasing amounts per week, you save decreasing amounts per week. Just flip the challenge — save P520 the first week, P510 the second, P500 the third, until week 52 when all you have to do is put away P10. This approach has two main advantages:
- It’s easier on your wallet. Instead of doing the most saving at the end of the year, when you’re also dealing with a lot of expenses, you’re getting it out of the way as early as you can. Also, you’re probably most pumped up about saving when starting out, so it helps keep you on track. Doing it in reverse also helps you save the most money when your expenses are still
- You see your savings grow faster. If you do this challenge the regular way (with increasing savings), you’ll only have a measly P100 after four weeks. Not exactly an amount that will encourage you to keep going. But if you do it in the reverse way, you’ll have P2,020 by the time January ends. These quick results will help motivate you to keep at it until you’ve made it to the end of the year and have over P13,000 to show for it. (Plus, if you’re putting it in a savings account, you’ll earn interest faster when you have more money in the bank earlier.)
Ready to take on the reverse 52-week money challenge? Follow these steps:
- Open a savings account for the challenge. This is where you’ll put your weekly savings, so you won’t be tempted to touch it. Check out the list of basic savings accounts here that will fit your purpose. (You can do this at the end of the first month, when you have enough minimum initial deposit to open an account.)
- Print out a schedule. This way, you can keep track of how much you need to save every week, and you can cross out every week once you’ve put that amount away.
- Make deposits every week. Choose a day of the week that you’re going to deposit money, and do it on that day every week so it becomes a habit. So if you save P520 on the first Thursday of January, save P510 on the second Thursday, P500 on the third Thursday, and so on. When you make it a routine, you’ll be less likely to fall off the wagon.
- Keep an eye on it. Every month or so, check the total amount in your account to see that you’re on track.
Even though these are relatively tiny amounts that you’re saving, doing it regularly adds up to a nice sum (P13,780, to be exact). Check out how your savings will grow if you keep at it, week after week:
(You can print out this chart for your reference, or download an Excel file here so you can keep track of your savings.)
Hopefully this gets you pumped up to start saving. So what are you waiting for? Make a plan and win the reverse 52-week money challenge in 2015!