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FRIDAY Five: 5 Financial Tips for Healthcare Locums

Each week in our Friday Five, we provide five quick tips about a different topic of interest. Interested in seeing a particular subject discussed? Send an email with your FAQ to

This does not constitute advice and advice should be sought in all instances before acting on it.

Being a healthcare locum – someone who fills in for another professional on a temporary basis – can be incredibly rewarding for those individuals that are suited to the lifestyle. While the potentially unsteady income might deter you, it’s great for people who need flexibility, independence, and thrive in an ever-changing environment.

Just because life as a locum can be unpredictable, it doesn’t mean that your finances need suffer. Here are five tips to help:

1. Family first

If something were to happen to you, being a locum doesn’t exactly provide security, so it’s up to you to make sure your family is provided for. There are a number of avenues you can explore to achieve this, such as critical illness cover and income protection. You should also consider protection policies as the basis of your financial plan to ensure any outstanding debts, such as your mortgage, won’t be a burden to your family after you’ve passed.

2. Emergency fund

If your income is sporadic, you’ll need the discipline to save for a rainy day whenever you do have work. Usually, you should have enough to cover 3-6 months’ worth of expenses in case you have an extended period of not working.

3. Prepare for a challenging mortgage hunt

Without a consistent income, it might be tough to find a reputable provider that will offer you a mortgage – but it’s not impossible. If you’re hoping to buy a home you’ll need to be prepared well in advance. Lenders will look for at least one full year’s worth of accounts that will show that you can afford the mortgage payments. If you receive child maintenance, this income likely won’t be counted in full (many may use 65%) if at all, but if you pay it, it most certainly will be counted as an expense.

4. Childcare Choices

Don’t forget to take advantage of the government childcare scheme if you have little ones at home. There are requirements for eligibility so be sure to check to see if you qualify.

5. NHS Pension

Even as a locum, you can participate in the NHS pension scheme, so be sure to keep up to date with your benefits. You can easily check online, but if you’re confused about all the information on your Total Rewards Statement, consult a financial professional for clarification.

If you need help with financial planning due to the nature of your job as a locum, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.

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