It is a brand new year again, time to fool ourselves into doing a resolution, which in most cases, fail. One common entry in the resolution list is the habit of saving. With the help of social media, the 52 week challenge became viral, as it can help jumpstart anyone to start saving.
I have known this saving scheme for a few years now and I am still not doing it. I am one of the few people around the world who believes that this saving scheme will not work and I have a few reasons:
The 52 week challenge is a saving scheme that increments every week. If there is one thing that I have learned after several years of saving, that is saving in consistent amount. It is very simple and easy to do. For example, if you are planning to come up with Php 60,000, and you have 12 months to do it, just save Php 5,000 pesos per month. Fair and simple. This develops a consistent saving habit. You can also use automated transaction from your bank for more convenience.
Income is Not Per Week
The saving scheme will force you to save an amount every week. The question is, are you receiving an income every week? Unless you are earning on a commission basis, the answer is no. Most employees receive their salaries bi-monthly or even once a month. My take is that, every time the income goes to our bank accounts, allocate immediately the savings needed. A lot of things can happen in a week, and temptations are all around us (malls, fancy restaurants, etc…). The tendency is, you can save for this particular week, but unsure if you can still save a bigger amount next week.
Week 20 to Week 52 is Overkill
Imagine if you are following this saving scheme:
Starting the 20th week, you will need to save at least Php 1,000 every week. That is Php 4,000 a month. and when the 40th week comes, you will have to save at least Php 2,000 per week. That is Php 8,000 a month minimum. For me, this is overkill. I would rather save the same amount per month starting January to December. It feels different when the ‘actual’ saving is done compared to just looking at an excel sheet.
People by nature are emotional in terms of money. If the 30th or 40th week is approaching, there is a great tendency that the saving will stop or you might be able to save in a lesser amount, and your target amount will no be achieved. Some people will say that they will use their bonus for the 30th or 40th week but the bonus is just a one time pay, and I am sure by that time, you already have a lot of things in mind to buy 🙂
Some will also argue that they will do the savings in reverse. So they will start saving the largest amount in January, and save lesser the next week, and so on. Come on! How can you save a large amount after spending all extra money last Christmas? 🙂
Incorrect Purpose of Saving in the First Place
Saving is a very common word but only a few people knows the true meaning of it. Saving should be related to a goal, and every goal consists a structure in your financial foundation. For example, your goal is to save Php 60,000 to travel for vacation. In this case, saving was linked to a certain goal (travel), which is right, but the question is, is it the correct goal that you should accomplish first? Have you secured your assets already through insurance? Have you locked your emergency fund? Have you started investing? Have you saved for your healthcare for long term? These are goals that people should prioritize. Even if you have successfully saved money, with the wrong goal, your financial foundation is already at risk.
This is just one of my first blogs regarding personal finance. Stay tuned for more blog posts on how to secure your financial foundation.