10 of the Best 52 Week Money Challenges For You

Last Updated on 21st November 2020 by Emma

How do you choose the best 52 week money challenge that is going to work for you?

I’ve got 10 year long money challenges to suit every budget from 0.50c a day right up to, well, a lot!

You might not earn enough to be aiming for $10,000 but you can still challenge yourself and be successful with another savings challenge.

Find the right 52 week money challenge to suit you and your money and start today, tomorrow, next week or in the New Year.

Your money, your choice, let’s dive in.

Why do a money challenge?

Saving money over a long period of time can feel a little boring, and lead to you giving up a few weeks after you go started.

Call it a challenge and its a whole different ball game.

Now it’s a target and you like targets, you want to succeed and prove to yourself and everyone else that you can do it.

Benefits of doing a year long challenge.

Unlike shorter challenges like saving $1000 in 12 weeks or 30 days, doing a 52 week money challenge involved dedication and commitment.

Having a laid out plan of what you are going to save and when keeps things simple so you’re not constantly thinking where you are with your challenge.

Using a printable 52 week challenge pdf also helps to keep things visual.

You can grab a printable copy of all these money challenges when you join my free resource library.

A year long challenge is a golden opportunity to create life long savings habits.

You might not want to save the exact amount every year but by week 52 you know you have the discipline to not only save money but to save wheat you set out to do.

How much can you save?

How much do you want to save? I’ve listed 10 different 52 week money challenges so its up to you. If you are on a tight budget then go for that one.

If you get paid monthly and do everything monthly then choose a monthly money challenge. If you use a lot of cash then the $5 challenge might be the perfect choice for you.

How to make your personal challenge a success.

Tip 1 – choose wisely. While you might love to save $10,000, if this would leave you eating rice and beans the entire year then it’s probably not the best choice.

Likewise if you’ve got very little weight to lose don’t chose that one!

Tip 2 – Start anytime. There is no need to wait until January 1st. These challenges work best when you are motivated to succeed.

You’re reading this so once you’ve finished move onto the next stage of choosing the right challenge for you and make plans to do it.

Tip 3 – Be determined. Money challenges stretch your budget, the first few weeks seem easy, month 7 maybe not so much.

Keeping a record of where you are, what you have saved so far helps to keep you motivated and determined to succeed.

There are printables of all the money challenges in my free resource library so sign up and download them today.

Tip 4 – Sock the money away first. Don’t wait until the day before next payday to save this weeks money, it isn’t going to work like that.

The best way to be successful is to automate your savings so the money disappears from your main account as soon as you are paid.

Tip 5 – Look at your current budget. See where you can make savings to free up extra cash. Make sure you are not overpaying on your monthly bills like energy and insurance.

To find extra cash try adding some no spend days into your weekly schedule.

image of the printables to help people save money

10 Best 52 week money challenges for you

The original 52 week money challenge

This is the one that started the whole 52 week savings movement. You will save $1378 by the end of the year when you stay the course.

It’s very simple. Start with $1 in week one and each week save the same amount as the week you’re in so:

  • Week 1 = $1
  • Week 2 = $2
  • Week $3 = $3
  • Until week 52 where you will save $52.

My advice is NOT to start this challenge on January 1st. Why?

Because it means you need to save the most at the most expensive time of year, Thanksgiving to Christmas.

If you are starting in the new year then try the reverse 52 week savings challenge instead.

52 week money challenge laid out with weekly targets

Reverse 52 week Money challenge

This is the exact same challenge as above but flipped on its head and the one I definitely prefer out of these two. Why?

When you start a challenge you are full of motivation and are keen to succeed, the reverse challenge uses that keenness to save the highest amounts in the first few weeks.

As the months go by, the amount you need to save gets lower and therefore easier to keep going.

How does it work?

  • Week 1 = $52
  • Week 2 = $51
  • Week 3 = $50
  • Until week 1 = $1.

Best for you if you are worried you won’t be able to maintain motivation throughout the year.

image of the reverse 52 week money challenge

365 day money challenge

This challenge moves away from counting the weeks and focuses on days.

However it is probably best to actually do the saving part i.e. transferring the money into another account, on a weekly basis, or even monthly.

Because who wants to be making daily transfers between accounts – tedious!

The good thing about this challenge is that its the same amount each week so once your automatic payment is set up you can forget all about it.

How it works

Monday save $1

Tuesday save $2

Wednesday save $3

Thursday save $4

Friday save $5

Saturday save $6

Sunday save $7

Weekly savings total = $28

Yearly total is $1456

Best for people who prefer a set amount each week rather than an escalating amount.

image of a printable 52 week money challenge for daily savings

Weight loss financial challenge

This is a challenge I have done a few times alongside work colleagues.

Save $5 each week for each lb or ½ kg you have lost.

It’s a flexible challenge and based on how much weight you decide you are going to aim to lose.

When doing this challenge with colleagues the outcome was using the proceeds to have a meal out together.

We had a penalty savings amount which was a great motivator. If we put on any weight then the savings amount doubled.

As the savings weren’t going directly into our own pockets, it really helped to keep us on track and keep losing weight.

How it works

  • Save $5 for each 1lb or 1/2kg lost each week
  • Save $10 if you put on any weight one week

Best for those who need something to motivate them to lose weight and doing it as a group activity.

Grab your copy of all these printable 52 week money challenges by signing up to my free resource library

Flexible 52 week Money challenge

When you are on an irregular income or your expenses vary wildly from month to month, saving the same amount each week can get difficult.

This is where the flexible challenge can help. You set your 52 week goal and then divvy it up on a very flexible basis.

The aim is to achieve that end goal but it doesn’t matter if much of your savings happen in the first or last months of the year.

There are 2 printable 52 week flexible savings challenges in my free resource library which you can use.

Best for people with irregular incomes, the self employed or those with variable monthly expenses.

$3000 variable savings laid out
$1500 savings printable laid out

52 week money challenge for tight budgets

When you are living paycheck to paycheck it can be difficult to see how you can ever find enough spare cash to save $52 in just a week as per the original challenge.

So here’s one that halves the original challenge and makes it much more doable for low income families.

How it works

Week 1 = $0.50

Week 2 = $1

Week 3 = $1.50

Until week 52 and $26 saved.

You will save a total of $689.

Again you can reverse this if starting out in January, don’t put your tight budget under pressure at Christmas.

Best for those who are on a low income or have very high outgoings.

alternative savings challenge for tight budgets with weekly amounts listed

Bi-weekly savings challenge

This one is aimed at the many people who get paid bi-weekly. A monthly savings challenge doesn’t always work when you get 2 paychecks a month but sometimes 3.

How it works

It follows the original challenge but with a bi-weekly twist with 26 savings weeks in total.

Week 1 = $3

Week 2 = $7

Week 3 = $11

Until week 51 = $103

image of 52 week challenge for people paid bi-weekly

$5 Dollar challenge

This challenge is worked very differently to the other money challenges because it is completely based on cash. No transferring money on payday.

Its all about saving every $5 bill that you receive. Wether you get 1 a week or 10 a week. This challenge is about saving every single one of them.

What is the $5 Dollar challenge?

  • Each time you receive a $5 bill in change, put in a savings pot.
  • Don’t count your $5 bills until the end of your challenge.

Best for people who use cash on a regular basis.

Save $5,000 in a year

How about a bigger savings challenge? One where you have a few zeros on the final amount?

These challenges can work very well as a deposit toward your first home, a new car so you don’t need car finance or jump starting your long term savings strategy.

How it works

You can save a set amount each week or month for 52 weeks.

  • $97 x 52 weeks = $5044
  • $417 x 12 months = $5004

Or you could use one of the printable 52 week $5,000 money challenges in my resource library as a visual aid to keep you saving.

image of how much to save each week in the $5000 money challenge

Save $10,000 in a year

This is a big money saving challenge and not for the faint hearted.

Saving this amount of money in just one year is a huge achievement and can be done when you plan it right.

For my best tips on how to save this amount of money head over to my post that goes into much more detail: How To Save 10K in A Year, And Some!

How it works

  • $193 x 52 weeks is $10,036
  • $834 x 12 months is $10,008

Best for those who need to save for a big purchase like a house deposit.

image listing how to achieve $10000 money challenge in a year

So there have it, ten 52 week money challenges to suit your finances and your individual circumstances.

Choose your challenge, download your free printable from my resource library and get started.

Good luck!

Grab your copy of all these printable 52 week money challenges by signing up to my free resource library

Come and follow me on Pinterest for more money saving hints and frugal tips!

pinterest image of the savings challenge
pinterest image of the $10000 money saving challenge
About Emma

I'm here to help you become confident in making the best money decisions for you and your family. Frugal living has changed my life, let me help you change yours.

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