My Expenditure and Savings in the UK

I often get asked if it is financially affordable to live in the UK. So, I thought about sharing my own experience so far.

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My Expenditure

It has been exactly two months since I started working in the NHS. I have spent only £1,000 in total in these two months.

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My Pay

My takehome pay is £2,450 per month after income tax, national insurance, accommodation rent, utility bills and council tax deductions. The pay scale for junior doctors is around £2,500 to £2,700 per month and we get a little extra money during the first month or so (because it is tax-free).

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My Savings

Thus, I have already saved more than £4,000 in the first two months alone. This should encourage everyone who is worried about finances in the UK.

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Breakdown of my Expenses

I have spent money mainly on groceries. The most expensive thing I have bought so far is my ePortfolio for £169. Overall, I have spent money on the following in these two months:

  • ePortfolio – £169
  • Initial groceries – £200
  • Regular groceries – £250 (£30/week)
  • Lunch/dinner/eating out – £80 (£4 per meal)*
  • Bus tickets for each weekend – £32 (£4 per day)
  • Return train tickets to London/Crewe (four trips) – £120
  • Railcard – £30
  • Provisional Driving Licence – £34
  • PassMedicine – £25
  • Monthly mobile data – £60 (£30 per month)
  • Accommodation rent – £0.00**
  • Bills – £0.00**
  • Council tax and other taxes – £0.00**
  • Total: £1,000

*I do not always eat out. I also cook at home or I buy frozen food. Thus, I have only spent £80 on meals/eating out in two months.

**Accommodation rent, utility bills and all taxes are taken from my salary. Thus, I do not have to pay anything for them.

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Disclaimer

This post only covers my experience. I have friends who have saved £15,000 in a year and I have friends who did not save anything during the year. Expenses depend on a lot of factors including the size of your family, whether you are sending money back home or not, accommodation choice, rent, city, pets, shopping choices. Overall, expenses depend on your lifestyle more than anything else. But the point is, if you want, you can save money no matter what your situation is.

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Conclusion

You will earn more than enough to live a very comfortable life in the UK. You can choose to save money, you can choose to spend all of it, or you can spend it in moderation. You can do whatever you want. But you will not be short of money. You will have enough money to achieve everything you have ever dreamed of.

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Useful Links

Pay Scales in the UK

Taxation in the UK

Banding

Working Hours in the UK

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. How much do we earn in the UK?

After tax deduction, the salary is around £1,900/month without nights/banding and £2,700/month with nights/banding.

(Night shift is a 12-hour shift in the U.K. You can read about working hours and banding in the UK by clicking the highlighted links)

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2. How much pay is enough?

It depends on your lifestyle and it depends on where you are living. For example, big cities like London and Manchester are more expensive than small towns like Blackpool. But the following might give you a general idea:

£1,900/month is more than enough for a single person and just enough for a couple.

£2,700/month would be more than enough for a couple.

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3. Would I be Able To Save Money?

Again, that depends on your lifestyle and the area where you choose to live. And, of course, it depends on your salary. It also depends on you being single or living with a spouse.

As you can see, I have saved two-thirds of my earning so far. I have seen people with £2,700/month, save £1,000/month for a whole year and I have seen people with £1,900/month not save anything for a year. So it depends on each individual and how they live.

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4. How much tax would I have to pay in the UK?

Depending on their grade, 20% to 25% of a junior doctor’s salary goes into taxation. Please read my post about taxation in the UK to get a more detailed understanding of taxation. In my opinion, considering the benefits we get, 20% to 25% is a very small amount of taxation and I pay my tax very happily.

 

5. Do I earn £2,450 before taxation, bills and rent or after?

I get £2,450 in my hand at the end of the month after all deductions. Tax, bills and rent have already been deducted from my salary of £2,450.

28 thoughts on “My Expenditure and Savings in the UK”

  1. aoa i heard one can get a job in uk without plab if one has cleared mrcp part 1 and ielts and has done housejob , is that possible? And then do mrcp 2 and paces during job , please reply

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  2. Where do you live ? I mean don’t you have to pay for rent? Sorry for my ignorance but i dont get it where do you live while working and after that.

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    1. I live in hospital accommodation. My rent, bills and taxes are deducted from my salary. I hope that makes sense. Please read the final FAQ of this post. Good luck! 🙂

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    1. That is correct. Everything is within reach. You can travel the world. You can get the latest and the most expensive phones, laptops and cars. You can do whatever you like. 🙂

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  3. Please make an exposé on getting a provisional driving licence, DVLA tests and getting a full driver’s licence in the UK. Thanks.

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  4. Hi Naseer. Thanks once again for your very informative blog.
    How big is the hospital accommodation? Will it be big enough to accommodate a family of 4? (2 parents and 2 children)

    Thanks

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  5. MAY I PLZ KNOW UR OVERALL PAY PER MONTH. mine is 2550 /month but bfr tax reduction. payroll say my tax reduction is 40%.. after tax and accommodation charges i could only get less than 2k /month but its in the first month even and my actual PAYE tax is not reduced.

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    1. Your taxation can not be 40%. Please check my post about taxation.

      If you are getting less than £2,000 per month, you’re probably at an unbanded post (without nights).

      I don’t know my overall pay, honestly. I just know what I’m getting in my hand at the end of the month. And that is £2,450 after all deductions for now.

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  6. Hi im a radiology resident in Sri Lanka. Do you know whether I can work in UK if I have FRCR. Do I get GMC registration or do I have to do PLAB?
    Thanks in Advance

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  7. Thanks for your helpful posts and blog.
    I understand we’re automatically enrolled on the NHS pension scheme. How much do we actually pay into the scheme?
    Is the pension contribution deducted from the take home pay after tax or is it included in ‘all deductions’, and then the remainder is the take home pay?

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    1. From what I know, we pay £250 to £300 into NHS Pension scheme each month.

      Your second question is unclear. There is no such thing as “all deductions” in our pay. “Take home pay” is what we get in our hands.

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      1. Thanks.
        What I mean is this : is the £250-£300 deducted from the net after all tax OR is is it already included as part of all deductions from the salary (which includes NI, income tax, etc?)

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  8. What are the charges of the accomodation? And what is the accomodation like? Do you live in a private apartment or there’s one provided by the institution you work at and they cut out the apartment charges from your monthly salary?

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