Common Financial Mistakes Physicians Make

Jenny Handwerk |

Common Financial Mistakes Physicians Make 

Doctors are among the top paid in America, which gives us far more financial flexibility and freedom than the average person. This means we have more opportunities for economic advancement and wealth expansion and more chances of making potentially devastating mistakes.

You are a dedicated physician with years of training and experience, and I am eager to see your efforts' results. Rightly so. You've earned what you'll gain through your preparation and responsibilities.

But here's the catch: no matter how much your employer is ready to pay for your dedication and expertise, your salary will generate declining returns if you don't spend and save intelligently. In other words, more is needed over time to cover your bills or achieve your objectives, much alone providing a pleasant retirement.

Both new and seasoned physicians must understand what mistakes they may make and how to avoid them.

Here are some of the most typical financial blunders that physicians make:

Ignoring the tax bite

You may receive a big salary, but how much money will you have? According to experts, physicians frequently focus on what they are earning rather than what they will have left over when Uncle Sam and the state take their cut.

In fact, a common mistake many young physicians make is ignoring the tax obligations associated with earning what they do and living where they want. Both can significantly impact your disposable income. Fortunately, you can avoid the sticker shock associated with reality.


Not making or keeping a budget.

This is the cornerstone of your economic stability, upon which everything else must be built. You need to generate a proper budget to meet your immediate requirements while also planning for the future to avoid leaving your future to chance.

Ironically, it is easier to stick to a budget when money is scarce. However, once you enter your post-residency career and witness an exponential increase in your salary, it becomes pretty tempting to spend irresponsibly. Small expenses can increase, and even the highest earners might face financial problems.

Take the time to analyze and comprehend your income and expenses. Consider recurring payments and charges and prepare accordingly. 


Waiting to Purchase Disability Income Insurance

Most residents and fellows know the importance of disability income insurance in protecting one's most valuable asset: the capacity to generate an income. However, it is not usually a primary issue as you begin your new career.

Because of the cost, waiting until you earn more money or have paid off some outstanding debt may be tempting. However, young physicians may make a mistake by delaying the purchase of individual disability income insurance coverage.

It's vital to remember that doctors at any stage of their careers who do not have disability income insurance risk losing their most valuable asset if they are hurt or unable to work.

New doctors neglect retirement savings to pay off student loans faster.

Young doctors' final common mistake is investing all their excess money toward paying off education loans and taking too long to save for retirement. It can be difficult for doctors to balance the pressing requirements of expenses and loan repayments. 

In addition to their future financial aspirations, such as purchasing a home and creating a college fund. When physicians consider these objectives, they frequently put retirement funds on hold, which harms their financial situation.

Not knowing where to put money for retirement.

Physicians generally start by taking advantage of retirement systems like 401(k), 403(b), or 457(b). Although these plans provide excellent value, physicians must understand how they work. 

For example, it is helpful to understand the types of investments available, the fees connected with each investment option, and so on. It is always advisable to seek expert counsel and research all options available.

Not making appropriate investment choices.

To ensure financial security, it is critical to develop financial literacy and make sound investing decisions. Doctors must secure their financial future. This can be accomplished by acquiring adequate insurance to protect people from potential dangers such as personal and professional responsibility, health concerns, injuries that result in permanent incapacity or death, and loss of important possessions.

Enlisting the proper financial advisor can be a wise investment in your future, regardless of your employment stage. They should assist you in making sound decisions and keep you on the right track. This person's primary responsibility is to develop a financial strategy that will benefit you both now and in the future.

There is always time to better your future, no matter where you are in your job or how far you have come.

Contact our team of experts, and we will help you organize and plan your finances.