You may have seen or heard about the 52-week money challenge, a program for weekly savings that results in your saving $1,378 by the end of the year.
They’re usually organized in a tidy little table. The amount of money you could save at the end is certainly enticing, but there are several problems with this idea, and a much simpler savings solution to pursue instead.
4 Problems with the 52-week Challenge
As they say, if things seem too good to be true, they usually are.
1. The challenge proposes that you save an increasing amount every week, beginning with a few dollars the first few weeks and steadily working up to much more at the end of the 52 weeks, which will add up to over $1,000. Anyone who has stuck to a budget knows that your available cash to save is probably more or less the same from week to week. It may be unrealistic to expect to be able to save more and more each week, making this endeavor lose steam and seem daunting about halfway through.
2. If you’re saving your cash in a jar sitting out, it may help you remember to deposit your weekly amount, but it’s also enticingly easy to pull out a few bucks if you need it. Putting savings into a savings account means that the money you want to save it out of sight, out of mind, and sitting right where you need it to be.
3. You won’t always have cash available. It would take quite a bit of careful planning and diligent weekly trips to the ATM to keep one of these plans going.
4. It’s easy to forget. From New Year’s resolutions to diets to daily journaling, it can be very hard to create new habits. A better solution would be to set up one of several options for automatic transfers to your savings account. If it’s automatic, there’s nothing to forget, and you can rest assured that your savings is growing without you lifting a finger.
Instead of this get-rich scheme, you may see on Pinterest or Lifehacker, follow the tried-and-true methods of savings that you find through MMFCU.