This week we’re looking for a financial guide to help you make progress toward your goals. Zacks Investment Research recently tracked down their top picks for retirement planning. We’re also talking about credit card options for cardholders who don’t want to pay the annual fee. And finally, we’re answering the question: Is it time to replace your credit card?”

There is an abundance of financial tools out there, but many are poorly designed and can end up costing you more money than you expected. Do you write down every purchase you make? Do you track your expenses? Do you pay attention to your investments? You may already be doing all of these things, but if not, Read On!

“We live in a world of infinite choice. Yet, often, the choices we make are not the ones that yield the best results. In fact, many of the decisions we make can negatively impact our financial lives. So, what are the best ways, and the best methods to help us make educated financial decisions? The answer. There are many choices. The trick is to make the right ones, and when we do, the results can positively impact our lives.

I just came across the 100 envelope challenge on social media, and some people appear perplexed about how this money-saving challenge works, based on the comments I read.

As a result, I decided to put up a short tutorial.

I’ll explain what the 100 envelope challenge is, how it works, how you may adapt it to suit your needs/finances, and some of the benefits and drawbacks of this challenge in the sections below.

Oh, and if you don’t want to use real envelopes and cash, I’ll teach you how to complete this challenge online – with free printables!

What is the 100 Envelope Challenge, and how does it work?

The 100 envelope challenge, also known as the 100-day money challenge, is a popular money-saving task on TikTok. It entails 100 numbered envelopes, 100 days, and a $5,050 final savings target!

You’re not incorrect if you believe saving $5,050 in 100 days is insane. It’s not simple to complete the original version of this challenge.

Fortunately, there are certain tweaks and changes you may make to better fit your own financial position and objectives. There’ll be more on them later.

Let’s have a look at how the original challenge works for now…

What Is the 100 Envelope Challenge and How Does It Work?

The original 100-day money challenge works like this:

  • Step 1: Purchase 100 envelopes (yes, you must spend money to begin this challenge… Unless you’re interested in my digital spin-off version, which I’ve included below.)
  • Step 2: Write a number from 1 to 100 on each envelope (for example, 1 on envelope #1, 2 on envelope #2, and 100 on envelope #100).
  • Step 3: Pick one envelope at random each day. Put the money in the envelope according to the number on the envelope, then put it away. If you get envelope #50, for example, you must save $50 (or 50€, £, etc.).
  • Step 4: Repeat Step 3 every day for 100 days, or until every envelope is filled.
  • Step 5: Congratulation! You’ll have saved $5,050 if you finish the challenge successfully.

How the 100 day money challenge works

That concludes our discussion. It’s all very straightforward.

As previously said, there are many methods to personalize this challenge, as well as numerous reasons why you may wish to do so. One of the major reasons is that saving $5,050 in 100 days is a significant amount of money. On average, that’s approximately $50.50 saved every single day.

Not to add, with random envelope drawing, you might be forced to save up to $679 in a single week if you managed to pick the greatest number of envelopes several days in a row! It’s not going to be easy.

Let’s look at some alternative rules and modifications to make things more customized…

The 100-Day Money Challenge in Different Forms

There are many ways to tailor the 100-day money challenge to your own lifestyle, income, and financial objectives.

Here are some suggestions for challenge variations and rule changes:

  • Version of the 52-week money challenge – This TikToker began with 104 envelopes with numbers ranging from 1 to 104. Every week, she opens two envelopes. In 52 weeks, this equates to a savings of $5,460. (around 1 year). On average, you’ll save approximately $105 each week.
  • Instead of drawing one envelope every day, draw 1+ envelopes per week, like in the previous edition. (If you want to complete in a year, do at least two each week.)
  • Draw 1+ envelopes every 2 weeks in the bi-weekly edition.
  • Draw 1+ envelopes per month in the monthly edition.
  • Change things up instead of marking your envelopes from 1-100 with custom numbers! You might divide the numbers in half (0.50-50), double them (2-200), or do something else entirely!
  • Increase the number of envelopes – This is an excellent approach to make the task more difficult. I’ve seen individuals push themselves to a 200 envelope challenge.
  • Remove the envelopes — This is useful for short-term savings or minor objectives. You could, for example, take on the 50 envelope challenge. If you number 50 envelopes from 1 to 50, you’ll save $1,275 after they’re all filled!
  • Choose your own envelope — Rather than picking at random, choose the envelope you wish to fill. This is useful for times when you’ve gone over budget or can’t afford to put too much money aside.
  • Make it a group effort – This is a great approach to make the task more enjoyable and inspiring.

With these ideas and some mixing and matching, you should be able to come up with your own 100 envelope challenge that fits your budget and savings objectives perfectly.

If actual currency and envelopes aren’t your thing, have a look at this:

How to Complete the 100 Envelope Challenge on a Computer

This is how I want to do the 100 envelope challenge. You won’t have to purchase envelopes (bam, money saved), and you won’t have to worry about having cash on hand if you do things online.

The following is how it works:

  • Step 1: Print off my free 100 envelope challenge printable tracker sheet (shown below) and select which challenge variant you’ll undertake. The traditional 1-100 challenge has a printed version as well as a blank version that you may modify.
  • Step 2: Set up a challenge savings account in a different bank account. As you “draw” digital envelopes, you’ll be sending money into this account.
    • Don’t have access to a bank account? Request a fee-free account from your bank. Try Wealthsimple if that doesn’t work.
  • Step 3 (Version A): When you’re ready to participate in the challenge, go to this random number generator (unless you want to select your envelopes by hand). If you’re performing a different version of the hundred envelope challenge, you may modify the number generator to roll a number between 1 and 100.
  • Step 3 (Version B): Download and print the tracker chart, then cut out each envelope individually. Put them all in a hat. Draw at random.
  • Step 4: Deposit the funds into your challenge savings account and color in the envelope on the printed tracker that you “filled.”
  • Step 5: Continue until all of your envelopes have been colored in!

Another advantage of the digital version of the challenge is that you can see all of your funds in one spot rather than having them spread out over many envelopes.

The disadvantage is that you lose the actual act of stuffing money into envelopes, which may be quite motivating for certain people. Fortunately, coloring the free 100 envelope chart (whether on paper or on an iPad) helps to alleviate this.

Printable Tracker for the 100 Envelope Challenge

Here’s a sneak peek at the initial chart tracker for the 100 envelope challenge:

printable 100 envelope challenge chart preview

Here’s a sneak peek at the version with 100 blank envelopes that you may personalize for various savings goals:

Blank printable 100 envelope challenge tracker

Get the free printables here (simply enter $0 as the price, or more if you’re feeling generous!) Please let me know if you have any issues with these printable trackers.

Who Should Participate in the 100 Envelope Challenge?

  • People who have no high-interest debt (10% + APR) – If you have high-interest debt, instead of storing it in envelopes, you should use your extra income to pay it off.
  • Those who want to develop excellent saving habits.
  • Anyone who doesn’t have an emergency fund — The 100 envelope challenge is a great way to start building one.

The Challenge’s Advantages and Disadvantages

The Good

  • You’ll save a lot of money and develop good habits — The most apparent advantage of completing the 100 envelope challenge, or any money-saving challenge for that matter, is that you’ll save a lot of money and develop good habits. Saving money is a skill that may be developed via trials like these. And it’s very motivating when you save more than $5,000!
  • Keeps you from blowing your funds – as long as you don’t loot your envelopes before they’re finished! If you’re doing the digital version, make sure you keep the money in a different bank account (as suggested above) to avoid spending it.
  • Highly adjustable — As you can see from the examples above, you can modify this challenge in a variety of ways to suit your requirements. 
  • It’s entertaining – Pulling random envelopes to discover how much money you need to save transforms a tedious job into a fascinating game.

The Bad

  • For others, it may be difficult or impossible — You’ll need to save approximately $50.50 each day ($5,050/100) if you stick to the original 100-day money challenge. That’s a substantial sum of money. Fortunately, the aforementioned variants may assist in resolving this issue.
  • Money kept in envelopes earns nothing — $5,050 is a significant sum of money that will earn nothing in a slew of envelopes. If you aren’t intending to use the money right soon, you should complete the digital challenge and put the money in a high-interest savings account, investing account, or robo-advisor.

Ways to Boost Your Savings Capacity

Even while the 100-day envelope challenge will assist you in saving, it will not cause money to appear in your bank account or wallet by itself. You must still have the funds in order to preserve them.

Learn how to make a budget to get started. This can assist you in visualizing your income and expenditures, allowing you to begin searching for methods to save money (if needed). For inspiration, look at the following articles:

If you’ve used up all of your cost-cutting options, your next choice is to generate more money. Making more money is always more difficult than saving, but it’s definitely worth the effort. For inspiration, look at the following articles:

Try These Other Money-Saving Challenges

If the 100 envelope challenge isn’t for you, try one of the following money-saving challenges:

  • Money Challenge for 52 Weeks — The challenge is presented in 9 distinct versions in this post! You will save $1,378 if you use the original version.

Last Thoughts

Money-saving challenges are a fun and easy method to develop the habit of saving money on a regular basis. They may assist you in saving for both essential (such as an emergency fund or credit card debt payments) and enjoyable (such as vacations) (like a vacation or fancy restaurant visit).

Just remember to keep things reasonable when it comes to the 100 envelope challenge. Some people may find the original 100-day money challenge impossible, and the last thing you want to do is set yourself up for failure.

Start small, start simple, and gradually increase your confidence.

Oh, and don’t stop saving after you’ve completed the task! Continue to put money away every week or month.

100 Envelope challenge (save $5,050 in 100 days?)

Stash-the-cash is a finance blog focused on wealth management, investing, and personal finance. It covers all things related to personal finance, ranging from investments, taxes, retirement, insurance, to personal finance blogs.. Read more about fitbit versa 2 and let us know what you think.

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