5 Simple Financial Strategies to Implement Today

We know that healthcare workers have a lot to worry about – the well-being of their patients day in and day out, their own personal mental health, caring for their families and getting adequate sleep to do it all over again. And of course, it’s important that nurses and other healthcare professionals get paid well to do their jobs.

Having consistent dollars rolling into your bank account should set your mind at ease, because we know that life happens. And when it does happen, you want to be prepared.

But when is the last time you did a financial check-up?

Whether you’re just starting out in the professional world or you’re a seasoned expert, it is important to create a financial plan. It doesn’t need to be anything complex or confusing.

We’ve put together five financial strategies to help nurses and other healthcare professionals take back control of their finances. There is no better time than the present to prepare for your future!

1. Know your budget
It can be easy to underestimate how much you’re spending each month, especially if you use credit cards or auto-pay. Out of sight, out of mind. Sitting down and being honest with yourself about your spending habits is the first step in harnessing your finances.

Whether you use a pen and paper or a Microsoft Excel sheet, carve out time to list out monthly, quarterly, and annual expenses. This should include reoccurring costs such as bills and loans, as well as one-off expenses like birthday gifts or planned vacations. If you have no idea how much you’re spending, or on what, take the time go back through your credit card or debit card transactions – spending habits can rack up quickly, and often come with additional costs due to credit card interest.

Creating a budget document will help you establish a foundation for future spending. Reviewing your budget allows you to differentiate between wants and needs, which can help you save money in the future. After all, you work hard for your money, and should know exactly where it’s going every time you swipe your card. Don’t forget about those sneaky monthly subscriptions!

2. Create an emergency fund
This can be done through a banking institution (this may be the more secure option) or at home if you have a safe place to store cash. The concept is simple: financial experts recommend that everyone should intentionally put money aside each month for real-life emergencies, such as a leaky roof, job loss, car repair, or unforeseen medical bills/expenses. Having a stash of cash will help you to avoid racking up credit card debt, which can be difficult to pay off in the long-run due to high interest rates and hidden fees.

Many banking institutions offer a free emergency fund calculator, which can help you to determine your monthly expenses. Once you provide a rough dollar amount for things like housing, utilities, groceries and childcare, the calculator spits out a realistic projection for how much you should be setting aside each month to go toward your emergency fund.

3. Utilize cash
When going to the grocery store or an event, determine your budget before you go and stick to that budget by only using cash. For example, if you don’t want to spend more than $60 at the store, taking exactly $60 in cash will lessen (or fully eliminate) the likelihood of impulse buys.

Or, if you’re going out for drinks, it can feel convenient to open a tab. After a few hours, you may lose track of time. When your ability to think logically is hindered because you’re a few drinks in, the “you only live once” mindset can take over and you can spend way more than you intended. Consider leaving your debit card at home and only taking cash – that way, when it runs out, you know when it’s time to go home.

Another bonus to using a pre-determined amount of cash – when you wake up the next morning, you won’t feel nauseous from seeing a ridiculously expensive charge on your card!

4. Consult a professional
If you’re struggling with crunching the numbers or just feeling overwhelmed, not to worry. There are professionals available to help. Consider speaking with a financial advisor. If you’re already a member of a bank, give them a call (or maybe shoot them a message through the app) to set up a no-cost appointment.

Financial advisors can break your spending down into smaller, digestible chunks and assist with goal setting. They’ll use their expertise to help create a personalized financial plan, which can include creating a savings account, investing in stocks and bonds, eliminating credit card debt, boosting your credit score, preparing for tax season, saving for retirement and more.

5. Take advantage of discounts
Many companies offer discounts or freebies to healthcare professionals, military, and first responders such as EMTs, police or firefighters. Whether you’re looking for a new pair of shoes or want to try out a meal delivery service or gym membership, discounts are available. And yes, the discounts apply to nursing students, too! If you’re going shopping in-person, make sure to bring your healthcare ID. It never hurts to ask a store clerk or manager if they’re able to offer an impromptu discount to a healthcare hero! Check out this Nurse Discounts Guide from DealHack.com for a complete list of deals and discounts, broken down by 14 categories.

Taking advantage of these tips will not only help you save money, it will also help eliminate some financial stress!


Contact Us

LeaderStat specializes in direct care staff, interim leadership, executive recruitment, travel nursing and consulting for healthcare organizations nationwide.