Between advancing your healthcare career, paying off student loans, and balancing daily expenses, you may feel like your finances are stretched too thin to begin building a savings account. Wherever you are in your career, a solid savings account is essential. By making the extra effort to save now, you’ll be in a better position to accomplish your goals later, whether those goals are to purchase a house, start a medical business, or advance your education. Use the tips below to begin putting some money away for the future, no matter where you stand currently.
- Create A Budget
The first step in any financial plan is to understand your current spending. To get an accurate picture, track your spending for a full month. Categorize your expenditures as essential or non-essential to create a “bottom line” budget that outlines how much money you actually need to get by every month. Prioritize your non-essential spending items and see if there are any opportunities to decrease spending and increase savings.
- Set a Goal
Once you understand your budget and have an idea of how much you have available to spend on non-essentials, set yourself a goal to put a portion of this money into a dedicated savings account each month. Make sure this goal is attainable, and leave yourself a cushion for any unexpected expenses. Put this amount into your savings account every month without fail, no matter what other expenses may arise.
- Make it Automatic
When you have your goal set, see if your online banking system allows you to set up an automatic transfer. Create a monthly or bi-weekly recurring transfer that automatically takes money out of your checking account and puts it into your savings account. Consider setting this transaction to take place the day after your paycheck typically arrives; you’re less likely to feel like you’re missing out on these funds if they don’t sit in your checking account for long.
- Leverage Your Expertise
As a healthcare professional, there are many opportunities to bring in some extra income.
From publishing articles and speaking at conferences and conventions, to serving as an expert witness in the court system, there are lots of out-of-the box ways to use your healthcare experience to bring in extra cash. Deposit any income from these extra opportunities directly into savings to avoid the temptation to spend them.
- Cut Costs
If you’re not interested in taking on more work, look for opportunities to cut your current costs. Consider taking on a roommate to share rent and household costs. If you already work long hours in your healthcare career and aren’t home very often, you may find this to be small sacrifice that pays off big. If you’re not willing to take such a big step, there are many smaller ways to cut costs. You could ditch your cable subscriber and switch to streaming services, make coffee at home instead of buying it out, or trade your yearly vacation for a staycation. Whatever costs you’re able to cut, make sure to put the money you save directly into your savings account.
- Hire a Financial Advisor
Consider seeking advice from a financial advisor to help you define your savings goals and put you in the right path to meet those goals. Working with a financial advisor may help you budget your money and meet weekly, monthly and annual targets to build your savings account.
Ready to take the next step with financing?