Quantcast

Is Medical School Debt Worth the Location?

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

CreedThoughts

Full Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2016
Messages
11
Reaction score
9

Members don't see this ad.
At this point I am heavily considering 2 schools. School A is in my home state and it would be very inexpensive to attend. School B is in a major city (which would be good for clinical experience, and they're known to be good for the type of specialty I'm considering right now) but their financial aid package is not as good and would leave me in a significantly higher amount of debt (about 100k more). However, I want the chance to experience living in different areas. I would like some insight on a couple of things, if possible:

1) I was told that location doesn't matter and that I wouldn't *really* be living in the city that I would be in because I would be too busy with school. Basically my entire life would be about the school so I wouldn't get the experience of the location. Do any current/former medical students out there disagree with this or would the lifestyle pretty much be the same no matter what city the school's in?

2) I know this is subjective but, how much debt would be worth attending a school in a favorable location? How much additional debt would be considered reasonable or unreasonable? (I'm going to try to bargain with school B since they're in the same tier... we'll see how that goes)

Thanks for your help.
 

fahimaz7

Full Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
Messages
3,293
Reaction score
223
Cheaper is better. That's coming from a guy with 225k in med school loans.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

CowboyNiceguy

Full Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2014
Messages
306
Reaction score
212
Related question: How important is med school location in getting a residency in the same area? Do people tend to get residencies in their area because their schools have better connections, or do they just choose to apply there?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

DKMA

Full Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
163
Reaction score
121
Take the cheaper one.

That 100K can balloon into 300K more by the time you completely pay everything off.

And you can do away rotations in the major city to form connections
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

ChrisMack390

Full Member
2+ Year Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2015
Messages
3,379
Reaction score
4,614
As long as the place you go has like 1 decent bar, a handful of places to eat, and maybe a park or something, you will be fine.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

fahimaz7

Full Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
Messages
3,293
Reaction score
223
Related question: How important is med school location in getting a residency in the same area? Do people tend to get residencies in their area because their schools have better connections, or do they just choose to apply there?

Both. Away rotations help get over this bias.
 

futuremdforme

Full Member
7+ Year Member
Joined
May 12, 2013
Messages
887
Reaction score
845
I would do school A unless school B is significantly higher ranked. (As in, a name brand school that anyone from anywhere in the country will recognize. If you aren't sure, then it doesn't qualify.)

You can try to set up research in the summer in a city location to build connections too.
 

7331poas

Full Member
7+ Year Member
Joined
Jun 17, 2015
Messages
3,043
Reaction score
4,012
Take the cheaper one.

That 100K can balloon into 300K more by the time you completely pay everything off.

And you can do away rotations in the major city to form connections

Seems like every time debt is brought up people pick more unrealistic numbers to scare people off.

Do you have any actual, reasonable numbers showing 100k tripling principle?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

summergirl

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2012
Messages
948
Reaction score
1,349
Seems like every time debt is brought up people pick more unrealistic numbers to scare people off.

Do you have any actual, reasonable numbers showing 100k tripling principle?
I'm genuinely interested in the answer to this question because I (international) will likely have ~300k debt by the time I graduate. So does anyone have a general idea of how much this 300k will become when I pay it off? I think I'll probably be able to pay it off in 5 years?
 

DKMA

Full Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
163
Reaction score
121
Seems like every time debt is brought up people pick more unrealistic numbers to scare people off.

Do you have any actual, reasonable numbers showing 100k tripling principle?
Yes, my using the AAMC FIRST loan calculator
 

DKMA

Full Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
163
Reaction score
121
I'm genuinely interested in the answer to this question because I (international) will likely have ~300k debt by the time I graduate. So does anyone have a general idea of how much this 300k will become when I pay it off? I think I'll probably be able to pay it off in 5 years?
What is will look like will depend on how quickly you choose/are able to pay it off.

https://apps.aamc.org/first-gloc-web/#/landing
 

DKMA

Full Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
163
Reaction score
121
Seems like every time debt is brought up people pick more unrealistic numbers to scare people off.

Do you have any actual, reasonable numbers showing 100k tripling principle?
http://www.moneychimp.com/features/rule72.htm

7% interest. 72/7= doubles every 10 yrs.

You do a 25 yr repayment plan + the time accruing interest in med school= 30yrs. Now the loan triples. That doesn't include the fact that the unpaid interest on the loan capitalizes at graduation

(The $100K capitalizes to 120K at graduation. So 25yrs/10.2= 2.45. 2.45*120= $295K)
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

fahimaz7

Full Member
15+ Year Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
Messages
3,293
Reaction score
223
I'm genuinely interested in the answer to this question because I (international) will likely have ~300k debt by the time I graduate. So does anyone have a general idea of how much this 300k will become when I pay it off? I think I'll probably be able to pay it off in 5 years?

300k in 5 years? 70k/year after taxes? Almost 6k/month is doable, just don't bet on it this far out.

Even if you make 300k/ year in salary, remember you have to pay retirement, 25% effective tax rate, mortgage, living expenses, etc . 300k salary turns into about 15k/mo after retirement (401k) and taxes. That ~7k/mo into loans is about 50% of your take home.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Giovanotto

Full Member
7+ Year Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2014
Messages
1,947
Reaction score
2,309
1:1 debt to income is the ratio to consider. Average physician income is what, 220k/year these days? Seems like you're going to have a really bad time with a loan greater than that.

I know this isn't the full picture, but it's a fairly good thumb of rule from what I've read.
 
Joined
Nov 24, 2007
Messages
8,089
Reaction score
8,655
I've seen a bunch of new faculty continue to live like a resident for a few years and completely destroy their debt, fund their FU account, and a put together a house downpayment. I know a few more ~10 years out still living in a simple 1 BR apartment, though in a nice building, and saving huge loot. Nothing is stopping you unless you start a family. That throws a wrench in the works. Obviously your income and the area cost of living will determine how quickly you can kill $200k+ of debt.


--
Il Destriero
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
Top