Quantcast

20yrs & counting

This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

Croooz

Senior Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2003
Messages
611
Reaction score
4
Nontrad oldtimer here. Applying to postbacc next year. I've read on here that quite a bit of the attendings have the goal to be eligible to retire at 50. So roughly 20 years of work with the option to no longer worry about money at 50. I was wondering how realistic that is. Now I definitely won't make the 20 before I hit 50...heck I'll just be a brand spanking new attending at 50 :laugh:. However my thought is that if 20 years is what it takes then I will be fine. Heck I'll be fine either way but just wanted to see what the consensus is of life after 20 years. I don't think anyone here has gotten to 20 years as an EM attending but I figure you guys could better guide my thoughts or offer some worthwhile suggestions.

All this of course is based on the assumption that I keep a simple life which I do. Big house, big car, big anything we don't care about. Just big time together with the money to enjoy our time. I'm a gemini who likes...being left alone! :D My wife and I would like to end up in Jacksonville, FL.

Fire away. :D
 
D

deleted109597

It's very realistic if you look at two things. Starting at 30ish, not having much debt to begin with, and investing properly.
Since the people with a large amount of debt (other than student loans) prior to becoming attendings are usually those that aren't good at investing properly, it's tough.
 

WilcoWorld

Senior Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2004
Messages
3,761
Reaction score
3,528
Not to be macabre, but you don't need to save as much to retire at 70 as you do to retire at 50...so you've got that goin' for ya.
 

fuegofrio17

Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2004
Messages
81
Reaction score
9
I'm 4 years out of residency and plan to be out by year 10. I live below my means and invest any free money. After 4 years out, my investments are earning me roughly the same as my present salary.

The thing you have to be careful about, though, is that there is no guarantee what compensation will be like in the future. We are most likely at levels of peak compensation presently. The way the health care system is presently structured is not sustainable. Health care costs are increasing rapidly, and a huge percentage of our GDP is consumed by healthcare costs. With entitlement programs like Medicare and Medicaid, there is a disconnect between the purchase of services and the costs of these services. When people have no skin in the game, they have no incentive to conserve resources. With the aging of baby boomers, and the prevalent trend to do whatever it takes regardless of cost, the present economic structure of health care cannot last.

We as physicians have the least amount of political influence. Politicians, insurance companies, and hospitals will carve out any available funds to their benefit.

All this is to say, in my opinion, that the future is very murky at best. I do not think you can project the present compensation model with any clarity past a few years in the future.
 

Croooz

Senior Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2003
Messages
611
Reaction score
4
All this is to say, in my opinion, that the future is very murky at best. I do not think you can project the present compensation model with any clarity past a few years in the future.

I get that. I've been in healthcare management for a decade. The thing is I'm not going to assume that EM docs are going to go broke either or barely break even. I've actually and quite *****ically based my decision before not to pursue medicine because of predictions of its future. That was a mistake I won't make again. If worse comes to worst I jump back into the military but I don't foresee that a military EM physician will ever approach the salary of a civilian. I could be wrong...it's happened once before...
 

guitarologist

class of 2012
10+ Year Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2008
Messages
62
Reaction score
0
I'm 4 years out of residency and plan to be out by year 10. I live below my means and invest any free money. After 4 years out, my investments are earning me roughly the same as my present salary.

Don't want to derail the thread, but I'm really interested in hearing how you accomplished this.
 

fuegofrio17

Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2004
Messages
81
Reaction score
9
Investments in equities, options, and rental properties--long dated deep in the money calls in Apple have performed extraordinarily well for me this year. If you have any capital available, Jan 2013 deep in the money calls are a good bet.
 

Renaissance Man

Saving the World
10+ Year Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2010
Messages
1,122
Reaction score
174
After 4 years out, my investments are earning me roughly the same as my present salary.

You went into the wrong career my friend, with these numbers you should be managing other people's money in a hedge fund.
 
Last edited:

EM_Rebuilder

Member
10+ Year Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2006
Messages
1,228
Reaction score
55
I guess this is off topic, but I wanted to respond to "everyone wanting to retire at age 50"...

I think that just comes with the territory of the type of people that Emergency Medicine attracts. I dont think I am in the minority when I say that one large reason why I choose EM was because of the flexibility of the work schedule... I have been rather vocal on here that I think this lifestyle is great, but also caution that I have only been out of residency 9 months so we will see what I still say 5 or 10 years from now... I might eat crow one day.

Regardless, myself and my family travel nearly monthly. I see my kid plenty during the week. I have become active in state and national organizations (honestly because I have this free time and its a bit 'fun')...

I love EM... but I am also building a great retirement nest egg so that by age 50 I can stop if I want to. Who the heck wants to work into their 60s unless finacially you HAVE to... IF I do work in my 50s and certainly 60s, I want it to be because I completely enjoy it and want to.... I think EM attracts the type of people that truly have many other interests and goals outside of medicine so naturally those type of folks want to 'retire' earlier in life....

BTW, this month I worked the minimum of my contract.. 10 - 12 hours shifts. I have zero more shifts until May 3rd. I will be in San Antonio, Las Vegas, and Chicago between now and then... These are business trips (conference, review course, and oral boards).. but still.. how many people are 'done' with their month on the 18th? My wife and I could have easily been headed to Paris in the AM for 2 weeks...


A bit more on topic... I do agree, starting a career in anything at 50 would be tough. My hat is always off to the folks who come back to medicine later in life...same to even the young folks in medical school with kids. Good luck to you, and good advice from Birdstrike about keeping an open mind....

Just my .02
 

Croooz

Senior Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2003
Messages
611
Reaction score
4
Thanks for the advice Birdstrike and EM_Rebuilder.

Not sure how much of an open mind I'll have cuz I loath pagers...heck even cell phones. I have a cell phone so my wife can track my thoughts but I've been able to avert being shackled to the work cell phone. So I think I'm kinda stuck with EM...of course there are still the 5 prereqs, postbacc, med school....
 

gman33

Full Member
Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2007
Messages
2,187
Reaction score
509
Thanks for the advice Birdstrike and EM_Rebuilder.

Not sure how much of an open mind I'll have cuz I loath pagers...heck even cell phones. I have a cell phone so my wife can track my thoughts but I've been able to avert being shackled to the work cell phone. So I think I'm kinda stuck with EM...of course there are still the 5 prereqs, postbacc, med school....
'
You are not stuck with anything yet.
post-bacc + glide year + med school + residency = 9-11 years

That's the path I went down, but I doubt I'd do it again.
Free time and quality time with spouse will be pretty limited during this time.

I'd probably recommend doing almost anything else.
 

Arcan57

Junior Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Nov 21, 2003
Messages
3,099
Reaction score
2,028
'
You are not stuck with anything yet.
post-bacc + glide year + med school + residency = 9-11 years

That's the path I went down, but I doubt I'd do it again.
Free time and quality time with spouse will be pretty limited during this time.

I'd probably recommend doing almost anything else.

If you can be happy doing anything else, then do it.

If not, welcome to medicine.
 

Croooz

Senior Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2003
Messages
611
Reaction score
4
If you can be happy doing anything else, then do it.

If not, welcome to medicine.

Thanks! 10 years Navy. Then 2 as a lab tech and now 10 as a program manager. Doing very well in the coveted 6 figure range and hate every second of it. Finished seminary during nights & weekends and graduated last year. After a few hospital visits during internship it became clear to patients, chaplain, and myself that while I love theology and ministering to patients what I loved most of all was the medicine. I can't see being happy doing anything else because I've already done quite a bit. So...medicine haunts me. As much as I hate the idea of being the ancient old fart in the room as a med student, it is what it is. Wife of 20 years this July is very supportive. :xf:

By the way, pastoring is the other profession that I know adheres to the same axiom of "If you could be happy doing anything else, do that instead." I guess I know how to pick em.
 
Top