General surgeon and financial lecturer Austin George, MD, summarized his findings when it comes to accumulating wealth the smart way for physicians.
George, who is an avid follower of physician financial advice website The White Coat Investor, shared his tips for financial success by looking at spending, saving and investment habits, retirement planning, and smart purchases such as disability and life insurance.
He underscored the importance of debt management – paying medical school loans as soon as possible should be a top priority – as well as “living like a resident” for as long as possible to get financially situated.
“There are no secrets to financial success – luck is rarely involved,” George said. “It takes a lot of planning, hard work, dedication and the support of your family.”
He said a physician’s goal should be building wealth, not accumulating stuff.
“Money doesn’t care or buy happiness, but it is less stressful when one is financially secure,” George said.
Tips for building wealth
- One spouse
- One house
- Live like a resident for two to five years after residency
- Pay off all debts quickly
- Save 20-40 percent of income
- Max out your 401(k)
- Max out your HSA, 529, Roth IRA
- Invest in taxable accounts after loans are paid off
- Have a goal for financial independence, a timeline of when you want to get there, and how much you want to have.