This year a big goal of mine is to develop a better savings plan. We’ve all faced a time in our life where unexpected expenses come up. The transmission blows on your car right around the time your child needs braces and your water heater decides to call it quits. These are unexpected expenses and something we need to deal with throughout life.
Often time when these unexpected expenses arrive, I am struggling to come up with the necessary funds because I don’t have an emergency fund. But times are a changing, because as the saying goes, “If you fail to plan, plan to fail”. This year, I am planning ahead for those financial curve balls and you can too.
If you’re driving an older car, or your water heater has been having issues lately, start saving up to replace the item. You may also want to start keeping an eye out for good deals on the replacement.
An even better strategy is to have an emergency savings fund. Set up a savings account or use an existing one and add to it monthly. For me personally, I’ve set up automatic transfers every two weeks from my checking to my savings account, so I don’t even have to think about the deposits. In addition to my regular savings plan, I’ve decided to try one of the 52-Week Savings Challenges.
52-Week Money Challenges
I did a survey last week on my Instagram stories and while most people had heard of the challenges, they had never done one before. If you’re not familiar, here’s how it works: each week you save a certain dollar and by the end of the year will have nice savings. There are so many options for the 52-Week Savings challenge, but I have picked three to share with you and created a printable for each.
Saving $10 a week for 52 weeks of the year will earn you $520 at the end of the year. Download the $10/week printable below.
Saving $20 a week for 52 weeks results in $1,040 at the end of the year. Download the $20/week printable below.
If you stick to the 52-week savings plan for the full year, it’s a great start to an emergency fund. At the end of the year, consider investing these savings into higher interest-bearing accounts. While you may not be able to access any money invested right away, it will come in handy when you’re dealing with a long-term financial emergency or are ready to retire. The plus side is that there are plenty of investment vehicles out there that will get you a much better return than a simple savings account at the bank. Talk to your financial adviser and come up with a plan that’s right for you, your family and whatever the future may hold.
Have you ever done a money savings challenge before?