Use This Chart to Save $1,000 This Year!

by J. Money -

money savings chart

If someone asked you to save $1,000 right now, could you do it? How would it make you feel? What would you cut back on? (Or would you need to go out and find a new hustle??)

$1,000 is a lot of money no matter what position you’re in. And if someone told me to save it on the spot I’d probably first sigh, and then add it right to my list of a million other things I still need to do – hah. I love me some money, but trying to save large chunks at a time is hard! I prefer slow and steady, please.

Which is why the second I saw this chart from MediumSizedFamily.com I immediately had a moneygasm (real thing!). A challenge + chart + print out all rolled into one?? SIGN ME UP!

Feast your eyes:

money saving chart
(Does this remind anyone else of the”Jump to Conclusions” mat a la Office Space? ;))

The $1,000 Money Savings Chart!

Pick one amount to save every week, and by the end of the year you’ll have a cool $1,000! I can’t even count the ways I love this thing! Oh wait, yes I can…

  1. It’s VISUAL! Ensuring an 872% more chance of you actually following through.
  2. It’s FLEXIBLE. No increasing amounts or other harder-to-stay-motivated goals as the weeks go by with other challenges, just tick off the ones as life allows!
  3. It’s EASY. You literally only have to pick 1 box and then make 1 savings xfer.
  4. It’s DOABLE. Scan your credit card or accounts right now, and I guarantee you’ll see plenty of numbers that match up there which you could have easily crossed off the list.
  5. It gives you a FREE PASS! Did you see that $0.00 spot in there?? How’s that for a savings challenge – “Save nothing this week” and still win!
  6. And lastly, it’s FUN. Print off a copy for your best friend and challenge each other to win together! Then throw yourselves a (cheap) party at the end while you count all your benjamins.

Good one, right? And I just found the PERFECT savings account to go along with this too which will reward you even more on TOP of these savings, hopefully motivating you even more :) I haven’t finished writing it up yet, but look for it to drop this Wednesday!

So, first, commit to taking this challenge this year, then secondly, come back in two days and see if this bank is a worthy spot to stash all your new cash. You can of course get started right away too and use your own, but whatever you do just make sure to keep the $$ separate so you can track your progress and stay excited! Nothing’s worse than not being able to appreciate your hard-earned savings. That was one of the biggest takeaways doing my Challenge Everything mission the other year…

Separated savings = multiplied encouragement

Here are some parting words from Jamie who came up with this brilliant chart:

“A simple way to boost your money saving chart is deciding that any “found money” you get will go into that account.  That means everything from getting a bonus to rebates to literally finding money in a pocket or on the street. Just match the amount you get to the box on the chart.”

You can download/print it off here: $1,000 Savings Chart

It’s 100% free, and Jamie also recommends hanging it on the fridge or anywhere else you’ll see it every day which I completely agree with. Get yourself one of those big fat markers to start crossing off those boxes too! :) DO IT!!!!!

******
PS: $1,000 to easy for you? Take Romeo’s challenge down in the comments and add an additional “0” to the mix! ;) That’ll make $1,000 –> $10,000! (And the $0 spot still $0, haha…)

Jay loves talking about money, experimenting, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his two beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!

{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Matt @ The Resume Gap March 27, 2017 at 5:15 am

Fun idea, especially if you actually bank that money separately like you suggested. There’s definitely something more motivating about tracking cash toward a specific goal — or even just watching a “slush fund” build up for a to-be-determined use.

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2 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 5:54 am

Yes! Keeping it separate makes a world of difference.

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3 FiscalVoyage March 30, 2017 at 5:44 pm

Matt. that is really a great point. Because a lot of people will see that extra money be then spend it right away if it is in normal checking account.

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4 Liz March 27, 2017 at 5:22 am

Love this idea! It should totally go viral on Pinterest. It’s interesting to me how $1,000 can seem like a lot of money, but when you break it down into smaller chunks it’s not that much per week. I use automatic drafts to save a bit of money aside each week – over the course of a year $20 each week adds up to over $1,000 as well! It’s the perfect way to get some money set aside for Christmas, birthdays, or a vacation.

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5 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 5:56 am

That works too! love it :)

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6 Mustard Seed Money March 27, 2017 at 6:29 am

I love this chart. I think it’s awesome that there is a space for $0 as well. Really neat idea.

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7 Band of Savers March 27, 2017 at 7:15 am

Thanks for bringing the idea to us J. I can’t wait to hear about the new savings account that you’ve found. For a preview like this, it must be good.

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8 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:39 am

I think it is! :)

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9 The Green Swan March 27, 2017 at 7:19 am

Nice idea. I like how each week you’ll put the savings in a separate account to keep yourself honest. I think this challenge is especially fitting for those new to the frugal life as it can be eye opening finding new places to save.

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10 Mrs. Mad Money Monster | @madmoneymonster March 27, 2017 at 7:35 am

Whoa! This is freakin’ awesome! I always preferred the decreasing chart that started high in January and ended low in December – ain’t nobody got extra money around the holidays. ;) But this one! This one blows that one outta the water. Love week 0.00!

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11 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:40 am

Haha yup! Changes the whole game up :)

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12 Apathy Ends March 27, 2017 at 7:46 am

Love the visual and simplicity – anything that gets people saving and excited about PF is a win!

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13 Marc March 27, 2017 at 8:10 am

Now this is something that I can get behind. It seems like a fun, easy way to do something that isn’t exactly fun or easy!

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14 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:41 am

I think we should print off a bunch of copies and then just leave them on people’s cars and tables at restaurants haha… Our country needs as much help as we can give them!

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15 FullTimeFinance March 27, 2017 at 8:28 am

Pretty cool idea. Make a game of it and seperate the funds. So much of savings Is psychological. In this way you cut it down into bite size chunks and picking up competitive motivation of beating the game, I’m forwarding this post along to some friends that have trouble saving.

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16 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:41 am

Awesome!! Be sure to check off your good deed of the day too ;)

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17 Manuel Schulze March 27, 2017 at 8:31 am

This is definitely a brilliant idea! I’m already saving a lot to investment accounts and short-term saving accounts. But I think when I’m back home I will give this a try! $1,000 are really much money no matter of your current situation and position.

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18 Mrs. Picky Pincher March 27, 2017 at 9:45 am

Hey, this is neat! It’s a great idea to gamify the process of saving if you find it boring or just plain tough to keep up with. :)

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19 Jody March 27, 2017 at 9:47 am

I saw this on RockstarFinance, love it. I’m going to use this to help me max my Roth this year. I’m going to put the date in each box, too, because my OCD is telling me so.

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20 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:42 am

Beautiful :) Yeah, when I get obsessive about something I share it across all my blog channels, haha…

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21 Joe March 27, 2017 at 9:52 am

Sorry, I’m going to disagree here. If you have to struggle that much to save $1,000, then you need to change the whole paradigm. This chart might be useful for a bit because it gamify saving. However, it’s just too much overhead. I’d be interested to hear if anyone really finish this. Digit is much easier.

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22 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:47 am

You don’t think the chart would get you to stop and *think* more about your saving/spending each week as you go through it? I agree Digit is much easier – and of course I’m their #1 fan! – but the con to them is that you never see anything going on so if you need to get your mind right you gotta start with more manual ways first before going that route. So to me this chart, or any other “tricks” you use to force yourself to learn/save accomplishes what it sets out to do. And, well, if you don’t last the entire year it either means you finally “get it” now and can move on to saving by yourself or using nifty fintech apps, OR it means you weren’t really that serious about saving anyways, in which case nothing’s going to help you out :(

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23 Lisa O March 27, 2017 at 9:59 am

This is awesome and it looks to be easy to accomplish! I love that the amounts vary so much and make it practical with life.

Looking forward to see what Wednesday brings with the new savings account.

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24 Danielle T March 27, 2017 at 10:24 am

This is such an ingenious idea! I can think of so many other applications as well (such as extra debt/credit card payments). One thing I think this will help me with personally is getting ahead of my husband’s work expenses. I’ve created a savings goal in Digit (thank you for introducing me to that gem) and plan to use this chart along w/ my YNABing until I no longer freak out when I hear “So babe, I need this thing for work…”

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25 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:47 am

Haha… I’m glad you’re finding the stuff we share here helpful :)

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26 Romeo March 27, 2017 at 11:05 am

haha. I second Joe’s opinion. But clearly, Joe, you’ve elevated outside of this chart’s target market. There really IS a lot people who struggle to save $1,000 in a year. More than you think. But you’re right, at that point they are overcome more than just “money issues.” I’m sure.

That said, this chart is awesome because you can add a $0 at the end of each of the numbers to go from “beginner” to “novice.” Don’t like saving $1,000 in one year? Go to $10,000.

And then add another $0 to go from “novice” to “expert.”

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27 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:48 am

Ooooh that’s good!!! I like that way of upping the challenge! Totally going now to add that in an update on the post – well done, sir.

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28 Mike B. March 27, 2017 at 11:06 am

Just opened a new savings account too, so this would fit nicely. I’m already rocking Digit though, so the ease of saving for this seems less. Although it might not be as easy to dip into the savings with manual transfers (versus automatically). Great visual!

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29 J. Money March 27, 2017 at 11:38 am

Digit is even easier, haha… and you’ll save way more than $1,000 by the end of the year too! I’m hovering around the $10,000 mark now after using them for two years – pretty wild.

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30 Go Finance Yourself! March 27, 2017 at 12:54 pm

I’m a visual guy all the way. Great way to make a goal of $1.000 seem a lot less daunting.

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31 Amanda @ centsiblyrich March 27, 2017 at 1:10 pm

I really love the idea adding the 0 on and going BIG! And no time like the present! I’ll start my chart today. :)

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32 J. Money March 28, 2017 at 5:50 am

Huzzah!

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33 Michelle Schroeder-Gardner March 27, 2017 at 1:57 pm

I love how the $0 spot was added. What a great idea and a fun way to keep people motivated.

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34 Mrs. BITA March 27, 2017 at 4:07 pm

The more games we play along the way, the faster the time shall pass, and the more likely we are to succeed.

This would make for a good app. You could enter the amount you want to save and it could generate a chart that added up to that number. You could link your checking and savings account to the app and have it do the transfer every time you scratched one off the chart. You could make it social so that you can share your chart progress with your friends. You could set common goals with a group of friends, like dinner at blah blah when everyone completes their charts.

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35 J. Money March 28, 2017 at 5:57 am

Hah – yes! I think you have the next million dollar idea on your hands :)

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36 Primal Prosperity March 27, 2017 at 4:46 pm

Great idea! I’m going to use this to hand out to the kids for the next youth finance workshop. I might also see if I can incorporate a game/activity into the session such as come up with as many side hustle/savings ideas as possible to cover the different amounts.

A note to Jamie – You should put your website on the pdf download so that if people use and share it, your site would get the credit.

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37 Jamie Jeffers March 27, 2017 at 9:44 pm

Thanks for the tip! I’ve made the change now. :) I love the idea of using it with kids. Let me know how it works out.

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38 J. Money March 28, 2017 at 5:58 am

GREAT IDEA!!!! It’s definitely kid friendly!

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39 Adriana @MoneyJourney March 28, 2017 at 6:30 am

This sounds like fun! Even to those who don’t enjoy budgeting :D
Maybe aiming for 10,000 is a bit too ambitious, but saving twice the amount on the chart – challenge accepted!

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40 J. Money March 29, 2017 at 6:00 am

Okay, so double this year, and then NEXT year go for the $10,000 ;)

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41 Elle March 28, 2017 at 7:22 am

This reminds me of the old Price is Right Game (which pretty much guarantees I’ll love it LOL). You punch one window and see how much cash you won.

I’m going to see if I can get some friends to try this out with me!

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42 J. Money March 29, 2017 at 6:03 am

Yayyyyyyyy do it!!

You can even meet up once a month to go over and chat about stuff and even have a running tally of how people are doing over the year :) Would be fun!

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43 gfaseed March 28, 2017 at 10:35 am

This is a good game, especially for children or for individuals with lack of finance knowledge.
They can fill that they want to “win the game”, and saving money in the process!

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44 DJ @1000WaysToSave March 28, 2017 at 4:36 pm

This is great! What a fun way to save. I’ve seen a lot of charts like this before, but this one has so much more flexibility. Very creative!

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45 Jon T March 28, 2017 at 4:58 pm

This is Great!!!!! posting this up on the fridge asap also will be forwarding this chart to family members. Thanks for the post! Rock On!

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46 J. Money March 29, 2017 at 6:05 am

So glad to hear, man!!

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47 Daniel Palmer March 28, 2017 at 6:47 pm

Interesting spin! The only reservation I’d have with this is that it doesn’t get you in the habit of consistently spending the same amount. On the other hand, I could actually see people having so much fun with this chart that they’d start challenging themselves to go way above and beyond the chart’s challenge! So I guess it really depends on what kind of person you are. I’m a boring old structure guy (I still have a bedtime), so I’m gonna stick to saving a fixed amount per week. But for everyone else who actually has spunk…

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48 J. Money March 29, 2017 at 6:05 am

Haha… at least you know yourself well ;)

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49 Linda@Frugal Turtle March 30, 2017 at 12:10 am

Neat idea! I might have to do this just so I have an excuse to start another savings account in my Capital One 360 account.

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50 J. Money March 30, 2017 at 11:56 am

Haha…. that’s an excuse well worth acting on ;)

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51 stephanie t April 4, 2017 at 11:09 pm

Oh J $$$$. Still reading but rarely posting. Last month you got me to finally (l-o-n-g stretch there) sign up with Digit – thank you very much I’m $250+ ahead already. Now you find a game I can actually execute. I think I’m in love with you again. (no worries wife person; it’s a blog-reading-money-saving-older-lady in love)

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52 J. Money April 5, 2017 at 6:19 am

awwww, haha… well glad you’re finding everything helpful over here :) always love seeing nice comments come through – so thanks!

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53 Rebirth April 7, 2017 at 9:03 am

This a what savings could look like if you save money every 2 weeks for a year. This what I was talking about when I said I have numbers stuck in my head.
$1 = $26 $6 = $156
$2 = $52 $7 = $182
$3 = $78 $8 = $208
$4 =$104 $9 = $234
$5 = $130 $10 = $260

This is a Facebook post that I wrote. I forgot to add that if this is too little money , you can alway multiply it by 10.

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54 J. Money April 8, 2017 at 4:18 pm

ahhh took me a while to get this, and realized you had TWO rows there and not one main one with some weird math going on haha…

$1 = $26
$2 = $52
$3 = $78
$4 =$104
$5 = $130
$6 = $156
$7 = $182
$8 = $208
$9 = $234
$10 = $260

The nice thing about the ever two weeks one is that you can just have your employer xfer the money for you :) And even better if they match it right on into your 401(k)!

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55 Rebirth April 9, 2017 at 2:07 pm

I’m so sorry I didn’t see that copy and paste did that till just now. And your right about the 401k match. I’m noticing that a lot of money challenges like the one you posted tend to progress. I like a steady pace but I think I’m going to add a dollar every time I hit $100. I’m actually already at $21 every two weeks. I’ll keep doing this until I can’t hold a budget. lol

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56 ZJ Thorne May 26, 2017 at 9:24 am

What a neat idea! I like visual representations of my goals. This would probably be really helpful in that regard.

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57 Jane zayah August 5, 2017 at 10:18 pm

I’m trying to gain more control of my finances at this stage of my life.

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58 J. Money August 7, 2017 at 6:56 am

Well being on $$$ blogs will definitely help get you there sooner :)

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59 TERRI September 12, 2017 at 3:51 pm

My Credit Union has these out for their members to pick up and fill in , but I was looking for one that would be good for kids. Maybe save $100 in a year or something.

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60 J. Money September 13, 2017 at 5:25 am

You have an awesome credit union!!

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