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  • Side business besides Medicine

    What sort of businesses doctors can do on the "side"? Been thinking about delving and starting one but wanted to test the waters and see what folks are upto

    1. The leader of the this forum - WCI - obviously blogs and does pretty well. So blogging is one.

    2. Zaphod and few others have "small business owner" in their signature. What is this small business?

    For the record, investing is not a side business. Thats investing. Real estate is ruled out from this premise.

    3. We talk about stocks and investment and saving but has anyone stopped to think about this? Best returns have been in small business, both financially and intellectually.

  • #2
    Rick Sobotka is an anesthesiologist who started a successful brewery.

    Others I've heard or read about are freelance writing, developing and patenting a medical device, medical staffing, and franchise ownership.

    I'm 2 weeks into blogging.  It's fair to call it a hobby rather than a business.  So far, I've earned 50 cents from the Amazon affiliate program when someone ordered a random book; I should get another 15 cents or so when someone's baby lotion ships.  Score!

    A quick google search came up with a blog for non-clinical jobs for physicians.

     

     

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    • #3
      ROI is what is key.  Almost anything could be a side-hustle.  Will the income be worth the investment and time?  I wrote short articles on a site and in general the most that could be made was about $10 per article.  You were only allowed to post 5 articles a day.  The most I made on an article was $2.  A big part of the earnings came from how large of a following you had.  To me it just didn't seem worth the time.

      WCI started this as really a hobby, but it has grown to be quite the revenue producing juggernaut.  But it takes time to build a site to a place where it is paying attractively.  Most reasonable estimates are 18mos to 2yrs.  Are you willing to be that patient and put in the work when in the beginning it won't seem worth it?

      I've done contract programming on the side.  Earning around $50/hr before taxes.  But it took quite a bit of time away from the family.  So haven't continuously pursued that.  And sales were going really well so it wasn't a stress.  Sales have gone down, but still think time is better spent working on leads and marketing then the straight programming.

       

      cd :O)
      Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary. -- Isaiah 40:31

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      • #4




        Rick Sobotka is an anesthesiologist who started a successful brewery.

        Others I’ve heard or read about are freelance writing, developing and patenting a medical device, medical staffing, and franchise ownership.

        I’m 2 weeks into blogging.  It’s fair to call it a hobby rather than a business.  So far, I’ve earned 50 cents from the Amazon affiliate program when someone ordered a random book; I should get another 15 cents or so when someone’s baby lotion ships.  Score!

        A quick google search came up with a blog for non-clinical jobs for physicians.

         

         
        Click to expand...


        But don't forget that Rick is a 4th generation Brewmaster.
        Lawrence B. Keller, CFP, CLU, ChFC, RHU, LUTCF
        www.physicianfinancialservices.com

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        • #5
          Investing can certainly be a business, it just depends. Contributing to your 401k doesnt count, but there are lots of ways it could. Real estate investing certainly counts if youre going to approach it for that manner, and as a physician you definitely should, because the likelihood you'll be sued is very high in RE (and you want to be separate as possible from your LLC interests). I have been contemplating starting a multifamily RE portfolio, as a wholly and serious side business set up as a holding company so it could be expanded prn. I have a different business I'd first like to at least try to get proof of concept and off the ground going this year and am going to focus on that primarily for now.

          If youre a 1099 or your own small practice you also are a small business owner. Yes, returns are usually great for small business ownership with amazing potential windfalls, its just that everything you hear about that is overwhelmingly, like a tsunami of it, neglecting the obvious survivorship bias inherent in those kinds of stats. Now, I think all of us have a better shot than the average person (better capitalized, other income, etc...) but to overlook that would be a huge mistake.

          In the end, doesnt matter, if you find it interesting and compelling and the initial capitalization or testing the waters isnt back breaking go for it, it will at least be an excellent experience where you learn a lot. Ive thought of it, and I think of it all the time, there are no shortages of ways you could leverage your extra capital and work ethic into something profitable, whats hard is choosing, focusing and going through the blood, sweat, tears, and *cringe* burn phase. I've not read or seen a lot of things where significant sums werent spent on those unfun things, the good comes after you've slogged through it past the point a reasonable person would quit...like medicine.

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          • #6
            Wait you are saying there is higher likelihood you'll be sued in real estate than medicine ?

            Curious which business you're talking about regarding proof of concept ? I'm always interested in new approaches/business models

            Personally thinking about blogging with service offered on that blog.

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            • #7


              Real estate is ruled out from this premise.
              Click to expand...


              Managing real estate can definitely be a full time job. Not sure I'd rule it out.

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              • #8
                Everything I've read on real estate investing (mostly multifamily), meaning getting a few properties, exchanging and upgrading, etc...says you will most definitely deal with litigation and its something to be expected.

                Maybe when Im started Ill discuss more, but its a decent idea (i hope) so I'll wait til its more concrete.

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                • #9
                  Good luck! Keep us posted

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                  • #10




                    Wait you are saying there is higher likelihood you’ll be sued in real estate than medicine ?

                    Curious which business you’re talking about regarding proof of concept ? I’m always interested in new approaches/business models

                    Personally thinking about blogging with service offered on that blog.
                    Click to expand...


                    As a general rule, blogging is the marketing, not the business. Very hard to sell a blog. For example, I'm in the advertising and book selling business. The blog (and now forum) markets that business. Some bloggers like Michael Kitces basically formed a bunch of businesses that people who would read his blog would need, and one out of a thousand readers hires him.
                    Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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                    • #11
                      My wife has worked since med school as an editor for Firecracker. Especially during med school, it was a great way to turn studying for Step 1 and 2 as a way to get paid. She also sells chicken eggs from our backyard coop for $2 a dozen.

                      I write for Study.com. I also self manage our rental property. Once I include tax planning and the occasional tenant issue it takes about 2 hours of my time on average each month.

                      Both of our writing gigs are 1099 jobs, and combined with real estate we have a lot of tax advantages we didn't have when we first got married and were working W-2. We've been able to partially deduct the cost of new computers, our Internet bill, and working vacations in the same town as our rental property.

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                      • #12
                        Thanks for the post. I actually did some programming gigs in the past too. Being contractor is fun but being a business owner is just better. For the record, I think WCI's blog started more as a business than a hobby. He himself has said that couple of times.

                        Small businesses are always sweat equity though. Upfront. Will post my success and failures here.

                         

                         

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                        • #13
                          We have owned residential real estate as a side business and as an investment for 25 years.  I have basic liability insurance on each property and a 4 million dollar umbrella policy, but the properties are all owned by me and my wife in our own names.  We have never been subject to a lawsuit.  One of the things we have learned in this business is that a key to our success has been being very choosy about renting to great tenants, and creating good relationships by treating the tenants very well.  Are we making a mistake by not holding these properties under the liability shield of an LLC?

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                          • #14
                            I hear opening up a laundromat is a profitable business

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                            • #15




                              We have owned residential real estate as a side business and as an investment for 25 years.  I have basic liability insurance on each property and a 4 million dollar umbrella policy, but the properties are all owned by me and my wife in our own names.  We have never been subject to a lawsuit.  One of the things we have learned in this business is that a key to our success has been being very choosy about renting to great tenants, and creating good relationships by treating the tenants very well.  Are we making a mistake by not holding these properties under the liability shield of an LLC?
                              Click to expand...


                              Sounds like you've done great so far without one, and while its covered by your umbrella insurance and that pretty much mimics the structure in an llc...it may be worthwhile to look into.

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