How to Use Savings Charts to Supercharge Your Money Stash

Need a little motivation with saving your money? Grab a savings chart to help keep your eye on the prize!

I am so pumped to start saving money!!!! WOO WOO… said only .0345% of the population. EVER.

Yeah, .0345% are the money nerds, people like me, and maybe you? Hey girl, wave that freak flag high if it fits! But don’t worry if you’re not part of this eensy teeny tiny nerdy group, you can still kill it with saving money! You just need a bit of motivation, and today I am bringing it for ya big time!

Remember in grade school, we’d get gold stars on the board, and if you got 5 gold stars in one day, you got to pick a prize? Well, that’s how it worked in my school, at least.

You’d get one star and think, “cool,” the teacher notices that I’m doing great. You get your 2nd gold star, and you’re like “hot damn” or whatever the 3rd-grade equivalent is. Then you get excited, you want another star, so you are raising your hand to answer geography questions like a CHAMP! And BOOM, another gold star! You are AMAZING, you are on FIRE today, and there’s no way you’re slowing down now!

It’s hard to beat that feeling of doing a great job at something, that feeling that you’re on unstoppable! We’re going to take that feeling and transfer it to saving money because seeing your progress towards a big savings goal is intoxicating (the good kind). These money-saving charts (printable ones too) will keep your eye on the prize and keep you stuffing that savings account!  So keep those gold stars a comin!  

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What are printable money saving charts?

Printable money-saving charts are a visual representation of how much you need to save to reach your goal, and more importantly, show you how far you have come. Sounds simple enough. They can be essentially anything you want them to be; any amount, look any way, be for any purpose. You are in complete control!

Usually, these are just printed out regular paper size sheets where you either check off an amount or color in the amount you’ve saved. You need to put this chart somewhere you will see it often! Because honestly, how many times have you made a goal, then just forgotten about it?  (don’t worry, I’m raising my hand here, totally guilty)

A money saving chart is similar to a money savings challenge, but a little different. A money saving chart is just a savings tracker for how much money you have saved. While a money saving challenge typically has a time frame associated with it. Usually 1 month, or a 52 week money challenge.

How to use a savings chart

You can print off your savings tracker and stick it in your budget binder (if you use it regularly), or tape it to your bathroom mirror or in your closet. You just want it to be visible daily.

Since I’m a total money dork, one time, I took over the entire front of my refrigerator and turned it into a Money Saving Central when I was doing a no spend challenge! I covered the fridge in cheap butcher paper and then charted out my savings goal. It was huge – visually speaking! There was no way I could forget about my goal!

For this particular goal, I was doing a no spend money challenge month and then saving that money for a solo vacation trip to Greece. I wanted to save $500 that month from my grocery, gas, utilities and spending money. I had it broken up into $50 increment blocks up at the top, and at the end of every week, I would mark off how much I had saved, and figured out my savings rate.

You can set it up to save an even amount per “checkoff”, say $10 or $20. Or if you need the money by a certain date, then you divide the amount that you need by the time frame left (either in weeks or months, is best). Aka a money saving challenge.

When you put an end date to the chart, it’s considered a money saving challenge, which is a lot of fun! They’re great for when you need to make saving money a habit as part of your savings plan or save money in a short amount of time.

Maybe you don’t want to carry around a bunch of printouts? Don’t worry, you can still use these ideas and incorporate them into a journal that you already have! Check out these fun bullet journal savings trackers for some inspiration!

What’s so great about a savings chart?

Having a savings chart can be a powerful motivator on your way to saving money towards your big financial goals. When you can see something, it’s much more “real” to you, so you are automatically more invested in the action needed (which is to save more money).

A savings chart is a visual representation of that thing that you want, whether your savings goal is for a vacation to the Caribbean Islands or saving for a new car, your first home, or even a Peloton bike!

 “The easier a goal is to see, the closer it seems,” said Rajesh Bagchi, assistant professor of marketing in the Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Tech. In an article on Science Daily, he continues, “The same thing happens if you are saving for a vacation with a definite goal and you see an image of a piggy bank filling up, instead of the dollar total only.”

A savings chart is that piggy bank, and you actively checking off an amount saved or coloring it in reinforces that you are in the driver’s seat, making it happen! You can see the finish line, and the end goal gets closer all the time.

"if i can see it and believe it then i can acheive it" quote

What can I use a savings chart for?

You can use it for any and all of your financial goals, basically anything that you need a little bit of extra motivation on! Common reasons include…

  • vacation 
  • new car
  • downpayment for a home
  • fill your emergency fund
  • a kitchen remodel
  • latest gadget
  • holiday savings
  • dump your debt in one payment
  • front load a new retirement account (i.e. an IRA), or your kiddos 529 college savings plan)

Where can I get a money savings chart?

You can absolutely make your own! And customize to whatever you are saving for! Or, you can grab a free printable money savings chart right here!  It comes with a bunch of other templates, all geared to helping you save more money consistently!

saving money free templates

Examples of printable savings chart ideas

Save $1,000 a month chart

  • That’s saving $231 a week (there are 4.33 weeks in every month) OR
  • $33 a day (average of 30 days in every month)
  • Or you can make it easy on yourself and have just random (easy to have) amounts that you may have in your pocket. The one below shows a good example of this.
$1,000  amonth savings chart

Save $5,000 a year chart

  • $417 a month
  • $96 a week
  • $14 a day
  • or make it easy and do it in increments of $50 (with one $100 for your baller day!)
$5,000 a year savings chart

Your savings charts can be in any amount you want, or you can even fill in the amounts as you go. There are no hard & fast rules, except for it to be visible to you daily!

What to do with your savings?

One of the most important things that you need to do when you are saving money for a specific thing is to separate that money from the rest of your spending/bank account. That way, there is no confusion about the money in your account, and you won’t accidentally spend it on something else.

Separate the money by getting an extra savings account (make sure it’s fee-free), or get a money savings envelope that you can stash it in!

If this will be a long term account for you, consider getting an online high yield savings account, so you can earn considerably more interest on your money than with a regular savings account. Remember compound interest is your absolute best friend!

Be sure to check your local credit union as well, they can sometimes offer very competitive interest rates.

If you get a savings account, know that you can only do 6 transactions (in & out) a month fee-free. This is a federal regulation, so any savings account will have this restriction.

How do I find extra money to save?

There are lots of little ways to find extra money to save, or you can shift the focus to making extra money and then saving that specifically towards your goal and use it to fill in your money saving chart.

The easiest way to save is to scour through your budget and find expenses that you can cut. If you need help with budgeting, be sure to check out all the budget planner printables that I have in the shop! Tracking your income & expenses with a simple budget template is huge for gaining control over your finances!

I am a huge fan of paying yourself first, that’s where you make saving a line item in your budget, and you pay that before you pay anything else. This way, you save money every single month without fail! You can do just one “savings” category in your budget, or use the cash envelope method of budgeting to save for very specific things.

If you can’t swing any money from your monthly budget here are some ideas…

Ways to save money

  • carpool or ride a bike to work
  • start a capsule wardrobe and stop buying clothes
  • learn to make the things you buy all the time (i.e., bread, laundry detergent, yogurt, etc
  • buy stuff from the bulk department – grains, cereal, spices, flours, baking mixes, nuts, etc.
  • cancel 1/4 of your services & subscriptions (i.e., Netflix, Birchbox, etc.)
  • do a no-spend month money saving challenge!

Ways to make extra money 

  • Make something to sell on Etsy
  • grow a veggie garden and sell to neighbors
  • make bread to sell
  • babysit for neighbors
  • sell your old clothes on thredUp

In the Saving Money Supercharged template pack, you’ll not only find a free printable savings goal chart but a guide on 75+ money saving tips and ways to make extra money! This list will jumpstart you towards finding the money you need to reach your goals faster!

Hint: If your goal is to bump up your retirement savings then be sure that you are contributing enough to the retirement plan to get the full match from your company! That’s free money, don’t let it slip through your fingers!

Remember, if you save more now, it’s worth so much more than saving money later on, as compound interest is your best friend in growing long-term gains and wealth!

Easy Savings & Free Money

  • Sign up with ibotta and get $10 sign up cash as a new customer!
  • Earn points on ANY receipt from ANY store and redeem for gift cards with the fetch rewards app.
  • Earn cash back from over 4,000 retailers with TopCashback when you buy online. Even on gift cards, at restaurants, and hotels.
  • Join Rakuten and shop at your favorite stores for up to 40% cashback; use the link and get a $10 Welcome Bonus!
  • Sign up with Inbox Dollars and get paid to read emails, watch videos, and take surveys. Easy peasy!
  • Save money at the grocery store with on things you already buy! This isn’t cash back; it’s instant savings at the register!
  • Get free gift cards & cash for the everyday things you do online at Swagbucks. Use the link and get a $5 bonus
  • Save money on gas by signing up with Upside; it gives you up to $.25 cents cash back per gallon! Use the link when you sign up; you’ll get a $.15 cents per gallon bonus!
  • Sign up with Cash App and get a $5 bonus when you use code “NRTZMHV”. You have to complete the sign up requirements to get the bonus! Read how to do this here with point #1.

At the end of the day

You know the old cliche, “Work smarter, not harder”? A printable savings chart template is exactly that; a key player in your savings plan! Not only because it’s super easy to use it, but it’s making you mentally and emotionally more invested in the outcome. It’s gameplay at its finest, as it’s tricky smart getting you to do something that’s good for you!

Hmm… maybe I need a savings chart for eating broccoli for my 5 yr old 🙂 Hey, moms have no shame when it comes to getting our kiddos to eat things other than bread & cheese!

So what are you saving for? Grab your money saving chart and start today!

saving money free templates

So what are you saving for? Grab your savings chart and start today!

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  1. I must admit spending time at home since the onset of the pandemic made me spend more money shopping online. I believe I’d greatly benefit from your saving chart at this time. I’ve downloaded it. Thank you for sharing it with us. ?

    1. So glad you’re giving a savings chart a try! I think you’ll love the sense of accomplishment that you’ll get when you can see yourself get closer and closer to your money goal!

  2. I love the idea of a savings chart! Somehow seeing it down on paper and tracking a goal makes it more fun. I am going to try this out!

  3. Thanks a lot for this post! I love your idea for these savings charts and making sure they are visible daily so you can stay on top of your goals. Will try this out!

    1. If you find it hard to save then you should absolutely try a savings chart! it’s a sneaky subconscious motivator as people love checking things off and have a “completion” mentality.

  4. I LOVE savings charts! We had a chart on our fridge for debt payoff, and I feel like the visual really helps motivate you by seeing your progress.

  5. These charts a great idea for visual processors. These would also be good for teaching kids how to save.

    1. Such a great idea to use it with kiddos! They are very visual, and like to know “what’s next” so seeing their progress, and how far they have to go is great!

  6. My husband and I have started becoming aggressive about paying off our debts and about wanting to complete our unfinished downstairs area. I think a savings chart would be perfect for us after reading about it in your post. Thank you.

  7. I had never seen a chart like this! I am definitely part of the 0.0345% population, too– I am OBSESSED with saving and designed a spreadsheet template that I look forward to filling in each month. It’s always so exciting to see how much we save each month, it’s like a game 🙂

    1. So glad you liked it Alyssa! Yes, the current environment has certainly made people reexamine their spending & saving habits, and it’s hard to be forced into saving. People are typically more successful when they are instead, inspired to do something different.

  8. These are such great tips! As a college student, I’m ALWAYS trying to save money wherever I can! Thanks for sharing!!