2020: The Official YNAB Savings Challenge

New year, new goals! Welcome to the official YNAB savings challenge of 2020!

Everyone is welcome to join in on this challenge, regardless of the size of your goal or the date you get started.

Claim your line on the spreadsheet below, and share a summary of your savings goals in the thread. There's also a spot for your forum journal link in the spreadsheet if you'd like to share! Bookmark the spreadsheet and come back to update your progress every month throughout 2020. 

2020 Official YNAB Savings Challenge Spreadsheet

The 2019 savings challenge resulted in over $1,565,000 saved and we're still seeing updates added in! That's incredible progress in just 12 months.

Let's set our sights high to start out this decade! Here's to your overwhelming success in 2020!

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  • Savings have been going well - July deposited $154, Aug will be more closer to $200.

    Like 1
  • I forgot to check in for a few months! In July I added $1,100 in savings and in August I added $1,000. I feel really good about it. Thanks everyone!

    Like 2
  • August check-in. Coming into the home stretch on the overall goal amount! 🚀

    • Retirement: $4,000.00/$6,000.00
    • Next Home: $4,996.41/$3,000.00
    • Investments: $4,320.00/$4,800.00
    • E-Fund: $1,066.27/$1,200.00
    • Total: $14,382.68/$15,000.00
    Like 2
  • Sept Update: even though these last few months I've managed to sink myself into debt, I've been keeping track with my savings. I'll actually meet my savings target before the end of this year. A bit anticlimactic - I'm so stressed with my new debt load I'm not even able to enjoy this surprise victory. Hopefully, when it does happen I'll be more excited.

  • Better late than never? I just updated the spreadsheet from May-now, haha. But to my surprise, I'm at 142% of my savings goal. What the? How?

    Goal: $15k

    Savings to-date: $21,425.84

    OK then. Guess I need a bigger goal next year. 

    Like 5
      • QC
      • HaplessFinanceProfessional
      • Queenofcoin
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      xgirlmama What a great surprise!  Congrats on your hard work.

      • xgirlmama
      • Purple_Griffin
      • 1 yr ago
      • Reported - view

      QC thank you!

      • xgirlmama
      • Purple_Griffin
      • 1 yr ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      xgirlmama I was actually able to sock away more $ into savings this month

      Goal: $15k

      Savings to-date: $28,292.41

      New goal: $30,000 by year end

      Next year I'm going to push for $25k. I think this year was easier because I remained employed and didn't have to pay for summer camps or gas or anything for medical

      Like 3
  • I'm surprised I managed to reach my stretch goal of a 6-month emergency fund this year! It's difficult to celebrate...it's been a hard year for me but so much harder for many others. However, I started this year off with a negative net worth, so it feels like I've come a long way. I really appreciate YNAB and this community for helping me stay organized and motivated.  Thanks everyone. No matter what stage of the journey you're in, you're very inspiring!

    Like 6
  • September check-in. Hit my overall goal amount! 

    • Retirement: $4,500.00/$6,000.00
    • Next Home: $6,246.41/$3,000.00
    • Investments:$4,825.00/$4,800.00
    • E-Fund: $1,166.27/$1,200.00
    • Total: $16,737.68/$15,000.00 🎉
    Like 4
  • Managed to achieve my emergency fund goal of $12,000 despite a little difficulty in the last 2 months or so. Stretch goal of $15,000 feels a little impossible but I'll just focus on every cent that counts towards it. Keep pressing on everyone!

    Like 4
  • Will there be a 2021 challenge?  If so, when does this usually start?  I need just this kind of motivation after this crazy year!

      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 1 yr ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view


      Yep.  There will likely be a 2021 challenge thread.

      Like 1
    • Hi nolemom !

      The challenges restart every year, but it's never too late to start! You're more than welcome to join now for what's left of this crazy year and roll right into 2021 with us! :)

  • Savings Challenge - August to October Check-In

    • August: $1,050.00
    • September: $900.00
    • October: $1,050.00

    COVID gets an honourable mention in me hitting my goal before the end of 2020. I'm just not spending much on anything these days.  I managed to hit my stretch goal of saving $15,000 right on the nose just this month.  November and December savings will be gravy.   

    Like 5
  • We had finished our stated savings goal in April and then started on our debt payoff plan. However, we sold a car in September and had a little more go to savings in November, so here are those numbers:

    September Savings: $2584.26

    November Savings: $116.36

    Original Savings Goal: $6000.  Total Savings to date: $10,637.08. 

    Like 2
  • Oct - Nov Update:

    So the stress of my debt load had me stay away from any money thoughts. I've actually managed to sort myself out a bit with how I'm going to work with my money going forward. It also led to me making a fresh start, I wasn't keen on doing it because I want to take more advantage of the reports aspects of ynab. But I'm pretty sure I messed up with the cc's so figured I'd clean up my budget.

    % for end of the year will be slightly over 50%. One thing I loved, that I did for the first time this year is the 52 week challenge. My bank has goal setting games set up where they will automatically w/d your money, and this was amazing!I'd honestly say a game changer. They also let you set up automatic withdrawals if your sports teams win. So I'm going to go heavy on all those options next year. 

    So having said that my 3 savings projects didn't end up too badly. These saving pots are slow projects, thus, I didn't expect much.

    My Buffer goal for this year was to get $1650. I'll hit that next month. I'm currently at $1608.30.🎉

    I wanted $1500 by the end of the year to throw into investments I'm at $1077.41. Sucks, but, oh well. Maybe something will happen in a month.😑

    For another Savings pot I wanted $1000, I'm currently at $884.02 😞. This pot would have happened if it wasn't the debt drama I had end of this year. So I'm a bit sad about this one.

    The great thing about everything is I'll clear my current debt by the end of the year. Categories that I created for annual bill savings like car repairs, cc fees, car insurance look to be met by their due dates. 

    Things I'm stressed about is that I'm not living off last month's earnings anymore because I was trying to cover those other categories and, of course, my debt. Savings as a result suffered. 

    So how do I see this year ending? Meh. Some good, some surprises, some I can't believe I survived feelings. Definitely feeling stress for next year.

    Like 1
  • Just added another savings deposit, and there may be another one if I get a Christmas Bonus. 

    Goal: $15,000

    Actual money saved: $35,791 (of course, some of this paid for things, like Christmas. So this isn't a "net" amount. Actual net amount is $32,908)

    % saved: 238% of my goal

    I had some help along the way. My wife wanted to pitch in about $1500 total in Nov for the girls' college fund. No dining out in 2020 (well, since Feb) helps too. Also, I think I've gotten gas twice since February (I have a hybrid, and well, there's no going outside). If I do receive a bonus this month it will go towards college, a car for them one day (they're 13.5/15.5) and Christmas next year.

    Like 4
  • Wow, I surpassed the goals I set back in June by nearly $4500.  🤩

    Like 4
  • I haven't checked in since the summer!  I "cheated" and wrapped my final debt into my refinance in July, so my savings got super charged.  Saved $22k and was only planning to save $13.5k.  Not bad.  The only good thing about 2020 is there wasn't much to spend $ on so easier to save money.

    Like 3
  • I can't believe it's almost the end of the year! My game changer in my savings approach this year was finally defining what "emergency fund" was supposed to mean for me: large expenses that could not be planned for (like sudden income loss and medical crises). Not extra dollars for spending on vices, fancy clothes I couldn't afford, or the sudden desire to take an evening class.

    Like 4
  • I hope this happen on next year 

    looking forward to do this challenge next year

    Like 3
    • Hi Cornflower Blue Moose !

      We're looking into ways to make these challenges even more inclusive next year. Can't wait to have you join us! :)

      Like 2
      • Peripherie
      • Tomato_Captain.11
      • 1 yr ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Faness The Debt Smackdown and AOM Challenge helped me so much this year. I crushed all of my debt and surged past my original goal of 30 AOM and stretch goal of 60 AOM (currently at 117!). I can't wait to join the Savings Challenge next year - whatever form it takes!

      Like 2
  • Final savings tally for 2020:

    goal: $15k

    actual money saved: $ 40,990

    273% of my goal

    I have no idea how this happened. Like, that doesn't even make sense. Thank you YNAB!

    Like 4
  • End of year check in: Surpassed my savings goal by $7900. Slightly increased my monthly 403b savings and maxed out my Roth IRA. Increased my EF a lot as well. I love the community challenges. They helped me pay off my debt in 2018 and 2019 and helped me focus on my savings this year. 

    Next year, my plan is to continue maxing out my Roth, get my EF to 12 months, and get as close as I can to maxing out my 403b.

    Hope everyone has a safe and healthy holiday. Looking forward to 2021!

    Like 2
  • December Update and End of Year Review

    In December I contributed $3,744.40 to my savings goals.  For this years challenge I have saved a total of $45,051.70. 

    My original goal was $22,500 with a stretch goal of $25,000.  I adjusted in March to a $37,500 goal and $40,000 stretch goal but by August was comfortably within reach so adjusted again to a new goal of $40,000 and stretch goal of $42,500.

    My December contribution means I have achieved 106% of my goal which is just. WILD!

    Congrats to everyone that's participated this year. Whether you achieved your goal or not, you're still ahead for just bringing your goals in to focus.

    Like 4
  • Last Check-in:

    One of my categories I hit this year's goal woot woot of 1650, another I was only 295.03 short for 1500 and for the 52 week challenge I completed up to 44 weeks, so short of 388. So that's not bad when I had extreme reduced income end of year. Overall, I'm pretty happy. And I'm excited for next year.

    Like 4
  • Final check-in:

    Our original goal was around $6k which we finished early to mid-year. We then turned our attention to debt. However, with selling a car, adding in the stimulus check (the first one), and scraping extra funds out of other buckets, we ended the year saving  $11,936.41. We had decided to put the end-of-year extra funds toward savings instead of debt since we have gone to one car with 100k miles. Having this extra savings puts us in line to only focus on debt in 2021!

    Congratulations to everyone! No matter whether or not you met your goal, this was a tough year for many, and you deserve a pat on the back :)

    Like 3
  • I just entered my last entry of the year. This challenge has really helped keep us on track for the past two years, and I'm grateful for that and appreciate everyone who participates in these savings challenges. This year we set a savings goal to move us along on our house purchase journey. We were fortunate to exceed our goal and will be closing on our house on 15 Jan.  This was a tough year and I hope everyone had something to celebrate savings-wise this year. 🙂 See you in the 2021 Savings Challenge!

  • What a fantastic year! Through a global pandemic and uncertain times, we still managed to break over $1 million in savings in 2020! 

    Updates are still rolling into this thread, so I won't close it just yet, but the 2021 Savings Challenge is LIVE! As you finish up your December update, start thinking about your goals for next year and head over there to add them to the thread! 

    Like 2
  • 2020 goal: 30,000,000 KRW
    2020 actual savings: 30,400,000 KRW

    The last month of the year was tough as I didn't get paid at all, but luckily I got ahead of my goals before, so I just managed to reach my goals.

    Great work everyone, 2020 wasn't easy, but we made it!

    Like 2
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