Ericslv

5+ Year Member
Mar 10, 2014
522
263
Status
Attending Physician
I don't know what specialty your in now but you most likely can switch. But, 300K debt is very high. Lets break that down.

Starting salary of most family doctor are around 180K/year. After taxes it's like lets say 140. If you live like a resident for about 4 years and say live on 50K you will be able to send about 90K/year to pay off the student loan debt.

After that how you spend you money is up to you but I suggest you visit the website "white coat investor" to learn about how live and save for retirement, buy a house etc. correctly from the start.

If you go rural you will make more money. If you go rural and get your loans payed of because you went rural you can live a little better and still save money. Just remember if the they pay your loans off it will be taxed so figure that into your calculations.

If you choose to go DPC (direct primary care) it will put you in more debt at the start but it will allow you to open you own clinic. This was one of your goals so I can tell you that in primary care is not easy to open your own clinic unless you do it in the DPC model and then it's is not easy. I myself have many questions about it and the best people who seem to be able to answer it are: atlasmd or pamela wible. At least they are the ones who offer training help and EMR etc.

So family medicine lifestyle is not easy if you work for corpmed. They will demand you see a set number of patients and produce. They will demand many things that can burn a doctor out. There are many doctors who are very angry with corpmed and want to leave but can't.

But I don't think it's too late to get into family medicine.
 

VA Hopeful Dr

Senior Member
15+ Year Member
Jul 28, 2004
22,305
32,329
Status
Attending Physician
Hey guys/gals,

I'm thinking about switching to FM for a variety of reasons, life style, regular hours, building a relationship with patients, continuity and versatility of FM. plus I would like to open my own clinic in the future. I'm pretty competitive for FM, fairly high board scores, AOA etc etc. Is it too late to switch at this point? Another question is, will I be able to manage my debt ($300,000 in debt) with FP salary and still take care of my family? I know its not about money, but need to be practical.
Its doable. For easy of calculations, let's say you start at 200k/year. Post taxes will leave you around 9k/month (depending on your state). I would expect your loan payments (based on my wife's 160k loans over 10 years) to be around 4.5k/month leaving you around 4.5k which we will round to 4k to include pre-tax stuff like health/life insurance from the job. I'm not sure what your mortgage situation is, but let's just pretend that's another 2 grand (probably a bit high, but better to calculate with too high than too low). That leaves you with 2k/month to spend on everything else - food, utilities, gas.

Only you can decide if that's worth it.

Now, that all being said, you can pick up some pretty decent extra money moonlighting. My take home from 1 weekend at a local urgent care, 8-5 Saturday and Sunday, is $1300. Do every other weekend and you more than double your spending money. Plus, as time goes on you'll likely make more at your original job as you get busier and more efficient.

Conversely, if you go to a more rural location you can usually get some pretty good loan bonuses when you sign up to work.
 

Ericslv

5+ Year Member
Mar 10, 2014
522
263
Status
Attending Physician
Its doable. For easy of calculations, let's say you start at 200k/year. Post taxes will leave you around 9k/month (depending on your state). I would expect your loan payments (based on my wife's 160k loans over 10 years) to be around 4.5k/month leaving you around 4.5k which we will round to 4k to include pre-tax stuff like health/life insurance from the job. I'm not sure what your mortgage situation is, but let's just pretend that's another 2 grand (probably a bit high, but better to calculate with too high than too low). That leaves you with 2k/month to spend on everything else - food, utilities, gas.

Only you can decide if that's worth it.

Now, that all being said, you can pick up some pretty decent extra money moonlighting. My take home from 1 weekend at a local urgent care, 8-5 Saturday and Sunday, is $1300. Do every other weekend and you more than double your spending money. Plus, as time goes on you'll likely make more at your original job as you get busier and more efficient.

Conversely, if you go to a more rural location you can usually get some pretty good loan bonuses when you sign up to work.

Just a thought.

If your wife has a 4.5K loan payment (4.5 x 12 = 54K) if you could afford it both living like residents, you could be out of debt in about 3 years.

I see those 3 years as just another extension of residency without the pain.
 
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