Jordan and I did a little money saving challenge last year. I had seen lots of these challenges floating around on Pinterest, and liked the idea, so we gave it a try. I don't know about you, but if we have money in our checking account, sometimes it's hard to save. This challenge worked great for us because the money we were trying to save wasn't sitting in our bank account taunting us (instead it was sitting on our dresser taunting us). We did this challenge separate from our regular money saving, kind of as a bonus.
I knew I would be more motivated if I had a cute box/jar to put the money in so before we started I went to World Market and bought a cute cookie jar. I also knew I would be more motivated if I actually liked the way our check-off sheet looked, so I whipped one up for us to use based off some I had seen online.
We had to have some strict rules on our cookie jar. Number one being, absolutely, under no circumstances, can you take any money out of the cookie jar. We were pretty tempted a few times, especially since it was usually the only cash we had around. Another fun thing we did was whenever I found money or change floating around the house, I'd toss it in. This was awesome because we actually ended up with a little more than $1400, instead of the $1378.
There are tons of different ways to complete this challenge. We stuck with the traditional one, where the amount of money you put in each week corresponds with the week number. It worked pretty well, up until November/December, when we realized $50/week was a little hard, right around Christmas. We think it would be fun to try going backwards, or even jumping around, depending on how your month is going financially. It would also probably work pretty well, just transferring the money straight to your savings account, instead of actually withdrawing it (withdrawing it and actually having it in a jar was pretty fun though in this digital world we live in, even though I know we weren't earning any interest on it).
Because it took us a whole year to save this money, we've been really cautious with it (we didn't start saving it with a purpose). Actually we haven't spent any of it yet. I feel like it has to be something really great to merit cookie jar money.
We decided not to do a money challenge this year, but think that doing something like this every other year, would be fun. In case you want to try this money saving challenge, here's our check-off sheet (P.S. you only need $55 to be caught up for the year):
Have you ever done a money saving challenge? What worked for you? Any tips for the next time we try it?