Last week, we talked to travel nurse influencer Brandy Pinkerton from Travel Nurse 101 about mental health. Today, we’re sharing her advice for nurses on managing their money – from retirement planning to lifestyle creep.
Brandy, what are some typical spending/saving issues for nurses and other healthcare professionals?
Spending and saving issues for nurses and other healthcare professionals can vary depending on their individual circumstances. Student loan debt is a common one. If you start out with a lower starting salary, paying off those loans can be tough. And as a nurse, you have ongoing education and certifications to pay for. There’s also the sacrifice involved in completing all your educational requirements before you even enter the workforce; it means you might start saving and investing at a later age than your peers.
That’s where many nurses will take on overtime or work irregular shifts to make extra money. But there’s a downside; that can lead to more stress and then more exhaustion, making it harder to manage their finances effectively. Then burnout hits, at which point healthcare professionals might abruptly exit their jobs or even leave the field altogether, causing massive financial disruption.
What are some common mistakes nurses make?
Common mistakes include failing to create and stick to a budget, which can lead to overspending or not tracking where money is going. And when you rely too much on credit cards, you can end up carrying high balances and paying a lot in interest. Once you’re focused on paying down your credit cards, you may stop saving for retirement or fail to build an emergency nest egg. So when a family or other emergency strikes, the tendency is to turn to credit cards and go back into debt.
Then there’s impulse buying and lifestyle creep. If you’re busy and stressed out, impulse buying can feel satisfying – and as you begin to earn a higher salary over your career, you may begin to spend more and more, so that you’re not really building wealth.
Being busy in itself can lead to things like ignoring workplace benefits and retirement plans, or failing to seek professional financial advice on savings and investment options.
This is so helpful. What would you advise?
Focus on creating a comprehensive financial plan and stick to your budget. Make sure you have appropriate insurance coverage, such as disability insurance, so you’re covered if injury or illness hits. And really make an effort to maintain healthy work-life balance and avoid excessive lifestyle inflation.
Thank you, Brandy!
You can visit Brandy at www.travelnurse101.com or: