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The first million is the hardest

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  • The first million is the hardest

    It is often said the first million is the hardest.  How many years (from end of med school, end of residency, etc) did it take you to reach a $1 million net worth?  How about $2 million? And each successive million after that?

  • #2
    This is a very arbitrary question that has to do with income, debt, and savings rate.  I am curious how the answers to this question help you in any way?

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    • #3
      It isn't that arbitrary. The paricipants on these forms are way too overanalytical about some of the questions that are posted!

      The reason I ask is because i find it most inspiring and motivating to hear how peoples savings and net worth tend to snowball over time. When you are a resident, and it pains you to max out your 401k each year (as you watch your investments gain very little over time), it eases the difficulty of saving when you hear about how peoples savings are growing faster than they can track (based on investment returns more than contributions) 20 years down the line.

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      • #4
        Donating 5500 to my Roth each year is painful.  That's a lot of $$ as a resident when you're taking home post-tax like 40k.  I could take half of that and go on a very much needed vacation for 1 week to the Carribean or something instead.

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        • #5
          2 years after fellowship to get to the first million but I cheated

          1) high salary + high savings rate (>50%)

          2) minimal student loans (~50k)

          3) married someone with a net worth approaching a million already

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          • #6


            Donating 5500 to my Roth each year is painful.  That’s a lot of $$ as a resident when you’re taking home post-tax like 40k.  I could take half of that and go on a very much needed vacation for 1 week to the Carribean or something instead.
            Click to expand...


            I have NEVER had a client tell me that they regretted starting saving early for retirement. You are doing the right thing. And I bet you could find a great hotel within a couple of hours' drive where you can chill for a weekend and have a few drinks for a lot less money.
            Working to protect good doctors from bad advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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            • #7





              Donating 5500 to my Roth each year is painful.  That’s a lot of $$ as a resident when you’re taking home post-tax like 40k.  I could take half of that and go on a very much needed vacation for 1 week to the Carribean or something instead. 
              Click to expand…


              I have NEVER had a client tell me that they regretted starting saving early for retirement. You are doing the right thing. And I bet you could find a great hotel within a couple of hours’ drive where you can chill for a weekend and have a few drinks for a lot less money.
              Click to expand...


              But it's cold in the midwest!  :P

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              • #8
                I am not sure when I hit the number, but at the time it seemed meaningful. In retrospect, seeing how many factors play into it, it seems less significant. For example, would it be better to have had $1.1M on January 1, 2000 or $1M on December 31, 2002?

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                • #9
                  2 years post-residency and I'm about 87% there.  I also "cheated" by going to a dirt-cheap med school (I only took out loans because they were interest-free until 6 months after graduation), moonlit like crazy, and have a very affluent and generous family.

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                  • #10
                    I should clarify: I am more curious at the difference in time it took people to go from zero to 1 million, then 1 million to 2 million, then 2 mil to 3 mil, etc.

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                    • #11
                      1st million-7 years- Pretty much all medicine. Savings, debt paydown, home appreciation etc.

                      2nd million-2 years- Medicine, earnings on savings, debt paydown, home appreciation, additional income from WCI, valuation of WCI.

                      That second million is highly dependent on the valuation of this website. If it were worthless, I wouldn't be a multimillionaire. It's obviously worth something, but like anything, it's worth whatever someone else will pay for it and it's not entirely clear what that amount might be. So in my net worth calculation, I just multiply last year's ad revenue minus expenses by 2 (I exclude book royalties, writing fees, speaking fees etc.)
                      Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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                      • #12
                        ^ That is amazing. Thank you.

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                        • #13
                          Came out with 100K debt at 3% in 2012. Minimum payments.

                          High starting salary (post tax 350K) which I leveraged to take ~300K personal loan at 8% and got 25% return for 5 straight years.

                          Lived in apartment for 4 years.

                          No sugar mama.

                          Did It in ~3 yrs.

                          Expect to hit next million in 2 years.

                           

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                          • #14
                            Came out of med school with $25K in debt in 1982.

                            After residency, net worth of $1 million hit at age 37 1/2, 7 1/2 years post residency. (Hard work, savings).

                            Age 59 (30 years post residency), net worth $6-7 million.  Stay-at-home spouse, single income, 4 kids graduated from college all employed and debt-free from undergraduate, paid-for house.

                            Still working because I enjoy it, not because I need to.

                            Live below your means.

                             

                            Dr. Scott

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                            • #15
                              Just wondering if people include their primary residence in their net worth.

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