Have you tried to save money but can never manage to save enough? Do you have trouble getting started when trying to save? Saving money every month doesn’t have to be difficult! We recently tried our first 30-day savings challenge and we able to save over $3000 in 30 days!
In this article, you will learn how to get started with your savings challenge, how to stay on track, which expenses to cut back on, creating a budget, setting strong financial goals, and much more.
These are a few reasons why you might want to implement a savings challenge.
- To build an emergency fund
- Saving for retirement
- Working towards financial freedom
- Saving for a downpayment on a home
- To fund investments
Let’s jump in and start your 30-day savings challenge!
Stay posted to learn how we saved over $3000 with our 30-day savings challenge.
Why You Should Try A Money Savings Challenge
It’s important to understand why you want to create a money savings challenge and how you will execute your challenge. Spending a small amount of time to define your why will help you stay focused when trying to save money throughout your savings challenge.
Define Your Why
Knowing your why is super important to keep you motivated. Get out a pen and some paper or a marker and a whiteboard, and write 1 or 2 sentences about why you want to save money.
Here are a few examples
- “To have savings as a fallback if something happens with my job”
- “Saving money will help me build wealth and also help me achieve financial freedom”
- “I would like to spend more time with my family and friends. To do that I need to save money and invest to create extra income.”
- “I’m saving money every month to build a rental portfolio with real estate”
After you’ve created your why, keep it somewhere that you will see it every day. It will serve as a constant reminder and help you stay on track.
How To Get Started with your 30 Day Savings Challenge
After you’ve defined your why, it’s time to get serious about saving money every month! Let’s take a look at a few savings challenge tips to help you start your 30-day savings challenge off with some momentum.
Goal Setting – Create Financial Goals
You will be far more likely to stay committed to your savings challenge if you create solid financial goals. Be realistic with your goals! The financial goals that you create should be achievable and measurable.
Examples of financial goals
- To save $500 in 30 days
- Save $100 every week
- I would like to save $20 every day
Notice how each one of those goals states a specific amount and a timeframe. These are both measurable so you can use these later when you complete the savings challenge to see how you did.
Talk To Your Spouse Or Partner About Your Savings Challenge
It’s important to get your partner on board when you are thinking about implementing a savings challenge. It can be difficult to reach your financial goals if you aren’t aligned with saving money.
You should also consider using your spouse as an accountability partner. More than likely, one of you will be more financially responsible and can help both of you reach your financial goals.
My wife and I like to create date nights where we talk about our financial goals, our budget, and anything else to do with money. We’ve found this as a fun way to review our financial progress and goals.
Create A Budget
Yes, I said it, the dreaded B-word! Creating a budget helps you understand where all of your money goes every month. Tracking your expenses will help you identify areas that you could potentially cut back and save more money.
Check out our article on budgeting for beginners to learn how to get started with your budget.
Here are a few of our favorite budgeting Apps. Check them out to find which budgeting tool works the best for you and your financial goals.
- HoneyDue – Available on the Apple Store and Android
- YNAB (You Need A Budget) – Available on the Apple Store, Android, and web
- EveryDollar – Available on the Apple Store, Android, and web
Write Down A Plan For Your Savings Challenge
Grab a pen and paper again and write down your plan for how you intend on reaching your financial goals for your savings challenge. You can leverage your budget to help you find out how you can reach your savings amount within 30 days.
Your savings plan should contain actionable things that you can incorporate into your daily habits. Consider cutting back on going to the coffee shop every day, overspending on groceries, cutting back on dining out, and avoiding places where you the most money.
Begin Your 30 Day Savings Challenge
It’s time to begin your 30-day savings challenge now that you’ve figured out your why, created solid financial goals, started a budget, and written down your savings plan.
Daily Money Management
Your day-to-day actions directly affect how much money you can save. Every day and every dollar matters! It’s easy to slip back into bad financial habits when you don’t have a strong purpose to achieve your financial goals.
Utilize your savings plan and budget to help create good financial habits that you can incorporate into your daily routine.
Here are a few actionable tips to help you with your daily money management.
- Save money before you spend it (pay yourself first)
- Use your budget to identify where you spend money every day. Cut back on those expenses.
- Avoid using online shopping to instantly purchase things that you want.
Your daily money management is ultimately what will make or break your savings challenge. Make a strong effort to be diligent with your money every day to achieve those financial goals.
Track Your Spending
Track your spending on a daily basis to see how much money is going in and out of your accounts. I do this every morning to see if there are any surprise charges hitting our checking account.
When tracking your expenses, you will find opportunities to save money. Make sure to update your budget as you adjust your expenses.
Cut Unnecessary Spending
By now you should have a pretty good handle on where you can cut back to save more money. Cutting back on your spending will be beneficial to help you achieve your financial goals.
Tips To Save More Money During Your Money Savings Challenge
Here are a few money-saving tips to help you continue to save even more money during your 30-day savings challenge.
Cut Out Subscriptions
It’s crazy how many subscriptions are available. It’s easy to start subscriptions and completely forget about them. Be sure to track all of your subscriptions and cut out any that you no longer use or need.
Be Smart When Shopping Online
Analyze your online spending and identify where you spend the most amount of money. Use this information to cut back when shopping online. Delay purchases and never use the instant purchase option. By doing this, you will begin to eliminate emotional and frugal purchases that can set you back financially.
Cook Meals At Home
Dining out expenses can add up quickly. Spend some time every week to plan meals for the next week and create a grocery list. Stick to your grocery list when shopping to keep within your grocery budget.
My wife and I love cooking and we will do date nights where we cook a meal together and blast music that we can dance to.
Start A Side Hustle
Side hustling can help you reach or maybe even exceed your 30-day savings goal! Starting a side hustle can be quite a bit of work though. Spend a bit of time to do some research and to select a side hustle that is a good fit for you.
Check out our article on 31 side hustle ideas to learn more.
Find Free Options
Find things that you can do for free instead of things that you need to spend money on. This will help instill frugal habits that will help you save money.
Here’s a list of a few things that you can do for free.
- Go on a picnic
- Ride your bike
- Go for a hike
- BBQ at home
- Play board games
Check out our list of 21 ways to save money every month to learn how you can save more.
Things To Remember For Your Savings Challenge
Saving money can be stressful. Try not to focus heavily on hitting 100% of your goal. Put more energy into taking action and making progress. If you keep it up, you will get awesome results!
It takes constant focus and action to work towards any financial goal. Figure out what works best for you and keep putting forth the effort needed to accomplish your savings challenge.
Don’t Give Up
It can be easy to completely give up if you find yourself struggling. You will not be able to achieve your financial goals if you give up before you build momentum. If you do fail, it’s ok! Try to learn why you failed and use that as ammunition to create a new successful savings challenge.
You Might Come Up Short Of Your Savings Goals
This will inevitably happen at some point. Especially if you decide to keep an ongoing savings challenge. Suprise expenses will pop up or you will forget about a bill that you need to pay.
It will be ok! Even if you don’t hit 100% of your savings goal, you are still doing much better than saving nothing at all. Try to stay consistent and make changes when necessary.
You can also build up some buffer funds to cover surprise expenses so that you can still meet your savings goals.
Remember To Have Fun
Saving money doesn’t mean that you need to sacrifice everything that you enjoy. Be smart will your money and factor in hobbies, dining out every now and then, and other types of entertainment within your budget.
You might be surprised to find how little you actually need to get by when you sacrifice a few things to save money.
Wrapping Up The 30 Day Savings Challenge
You now have all of the information you need to get started with your very own 30-day savings challenge! Remember to take action and make effort every day to achieve your financial goals.
The Results From Our 30 Day Savings Challenge
My wife and I decided that we would try to live off of one income for 30 days and try to save the entire second income. It was a lofty goal and we fell a little short but we were still able to save a little bit over $3000!
Our Goal – Save $4200 in 30 days by living off of one income.
Our Results – We ended up saving $3200 which was a bit shy of our goal but was much more than we had ever saved in 30 days!
Even though didn’t hit our target, we still saved 76% of our initial goal.
Tips For A Successful Savings Challenge
- Have a buffer – Try to have a buffer of a few hundred dollars that you can dip into if needed.
- Know when automated payments go through – Sudden automated payments can really throw a wrench at your savings challenge. Be ready for those payments to come out and have a plan to cover those costs.
- It’s ok to fall a bit short – Don’t put too much stress on yourself if you can’t hit your goal. Use your learnings to try to save more on your next challenge.
We wish you luck on your savings challenge and hope that the information in this article helps you save money. Please let us know if you have any savings challenge tips that didn’t make this article.
Hi, I’m Richard. I’m passionate about figuring out how to make my money work for me and getting outdoors into mother nature.