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Commute Distance and Call

Home Mortgages and Home Buying Commute Distance and Call

  • Avatar mxg67 
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    Status: Physician
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    Joined: 11/25/2016

    I have a potential new attending job lined up and I’m looking at housing options, location and commute distance/time, and how it relates to being on call.  I’ve always done in-hospital call, never home call so this will be new to me.  I’d be on call Q5 or so, and will occasionally have to go in during the night, but for non-urgent issues.  I’m wondering if I should consider this in my search for housing.  Should I consider living a bit closer to the hospital?  What’s the max distance/time you would be willing to drive for a middle-of-the-night hospital visit?  How much of a factor do you consider call in your housing location choice? The main thing I’m thinking about is safety; driving groggy, suburb highway driving sleepiness as opposed to urban stop-go stoplight driving, etc.  I’m looking at anything from a condo across the street, a 10min urban commute from an expensive neighborhood to a 20min highway commute in a suburb.

    #176630 Reply
    hatton1 hatton1 
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    Status: Physician
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    Joined: 01/11/2016

    This depends on your speciality.  Being close was very important to me.  I was OB.  I loved being able to come in near delivery time with a one mile commute.  If you are non-emergent q 5 call live where you want.  I think most people will tell you that a long commute really burns them out.

    #176632 Reply
    Liked by SLC OB
    jfoxcpacfp jfoxcpacfp 
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    Status: Financial Advisor, Accountant, Small Business Owner
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    How much do you have in student loans? Building on @hatton1, your next priority should be cost as an inverse to loan balance, assuming you have any.

    Johanna Fox Turner, CPA, CFP, Fox Wealth Mgmt & Fox CPAs ~
    http://www.fox-cpas.com/for-doctors-only ~ [email protected]

    #176633 Reply
    Vagabond MD Vagabond MD 
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    Status: Physician
    Posts: 3478
    Joined: 01/21/2016

    The amount of annoyance with Hospital call-ins is proportional to the distance you live from the Hospital squared, multiplied by the number of years on call, divided by the frequency of call. This will be additionally modified by the nature of the call. Is it REALLY necessary for you to be there? You will get lots of call-ins for things that are far from emergent or urgent (like someone forgot to call you on Friday, so now you are coming in on Saturday).

    Example, if you live 2 miles from the Hospital and you have been taking q4 call for two years for a true emergency, your annoyance score is a 2 (4 x 2 x 1/4 x 1).

    Let’s calculate the annoyance score for this scenario: You live 5 miles from the Hospital, have been taking q3 call for ten years, and your presence is requested because the 7th family member, a nephew from Poughkeepsie, who is a third year med student, wants to ask you a few questions in person on the Saturday afternoon while you were teaching your 6 year old how to ride a bike, and you just left the Hospital an hour ago: 25 x 10 x 1/3 x infinity equals… okay, you get the idea.

     

    "Wealth is the slave of the wise man and the master of the fool.” -Seneca the Younger

    Avatar Tim 
    Participant
    Status: Accountant
    Posts: 3088
    Joined: 09/18/2018

    A commute over 20 minutes will become an irritant.
    1)Translates to 1.5 at least in the middle of the night or going in at 11 pm.
    2) Stop lights can be a PIA. Sitting at an empty intersection at night is irritating. Do it four or 5 times through town will teach you patience or result in tickets.
    3) Windows down, radio blasting singing your heart out helps prop the eyelids open.

    You didn’t mention cost and it’s a new position. You didn’t mention anything about housing desires or differences. Conclusion, shorter the better. Daily commute is much more frequent.

    #176682 Reply
    childay childay 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
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    Joined: 01/09/2016
    I’d be on call Q5 or so, and will occasionally have to go in during the night, but for non-urgent issues

    Click to expand…

    What does “occasionally” mean?

    #176685 Reply
    Liked by ENT Doc, q-school
    Avatar Anne 
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    Status: Physician
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    Joined: 11/07/2017
    Splash Refinancing Bonus

    Being close to the hospital is very important for middle of the night calls when you are on home call.  So easy to go in and take care of things, and when it turns out to be nothing it’s not nearly as irritating as when you drove 40 min round trip.  Especially since it’s a new job (your first?), I say rent the condo nearby, get oriented to the area and the job, find out what “occasionally” actually means, decide if you like the job and want to stay, and then if you want to stay you will know what the call is actually like, what the traffic patterns are like in the area for the daily commute, etc. and decide where you want to live after that.

    #176694 Reply
    Avatar artemis 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 593
    Joined: 12/02/2016

     I say rent the condo nearby, get oriented to the area and the job, find out what “occasionally” actually means, decide if you like the job and want to stay, and then if you want to stay you will know what the call is actually like, what the traffic patterns are like in the area for the daily commute, etc. and decide where you want to live after that.

    Click to expand…

    This is an excellent suggestion!  Remember, too, that if you live in an area which gets snow in the winter, that 20 minute commute can turn into a 40 minute commute courtesy of a blizzard or (worse) freezing rain.  There were times in the past back when I owned a house in the burbs when I actually slept in my office rather than go home because I was on call and couldn’t be sure I’d be able to make it back in if I went home and got paged, the roads were getting so bad due to a blizzard.

    #176716 Reply
    Liked by Firefly, Anne, hatton1
    hatton1 hatton1 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 3064
    Joined: 01/11/2016

    The amount of annoyance with Hospital call-ins is proportional to the distance you live from the Hospital squared, multiplied by the number of years on call, divided by the frequency of call. This will be additionally modified by the nature of the call. Is it REALLY necessary for you to be there? You will get lots of call-ins for things that are far from emergent or urgent (like someone forgot to call you on Friday, so now you are coming in on Saturday).

    Example, if you live 2 miles from the Hospital and you have been taking q4 call for two years for a true emergency, your annoyance score is a 2 (4 x 2 x 1/4 x 1).

    Let’s calculate the annoyance score for this scenario: You live 5 miles from the Hospital, have been taking q3 call for ten years, and your presence is requested because the 7th family member, a nephew from Poughkeepsie, who is a third year med student, wants to ask you a few questions in person on the Saturday afternoon while you were teaching your 6 year old how to ride a bike, and you just left the Hospital an hour ago: 25 x 10 x 1/3 x infinity equals… okay, you get the idea.

     

    Click to expand…

    Vagabond develops another formula for call annoyance.  CLEVER.

    #176727 Reply
    Avatar iradoc 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 68
    Joined: 11/10/2017

    The amount of annoyance with Hospital call-ins is proportional to the distance you live from the Hospital squared, multiplied by the number of years on call, divided by the frequency of call. This will be additionally modified by the nature of the call. Is it REALLY necessary for you to be there? You will get lots of call-ins for things that are far from emergent or urgent (like someone forgot to call you on Friday, so now you are coming in on Saturday).

    Example, if you live 2 miles from the Hospital and you have been taking q4 call for two years for a true emergency, your annoyance score is a 2 (4 x 2 x 1/4 x 1).

    Let’s calculate the annoyance score for this scenario: You live 5 miles from the Hospital, have been taking q3 call for ten years, and your presence is requested because the 7th family member, a nephew from Poughkeepsie, who is a third year med student, wants to ask you a few questions in person on the Saturday afternoon while you were teaching your 6 year old how to ride a bike, and you just left the Hospital an hour ago: 25 x 10 x 1/3 x infinity equals… okay, you get the idea.

     

    Click to expand…

    Great formula, so true.  Straight out of fellowship I bought (yes very dumb in retrospect) a small house about 15 min from the hospital.  Was unmarried without kids, so loved going in to call whether the case was a true emergency or not (to the consternation of my IR techs/RNs I’m sure).

    I have since moved 40 min away from hosp and am married w/ two small kids and am ten years out in PP.  The rural easy highway commute I actually enjoy (listening to podcasts and what not) on a standard weekday commute is what I despise when I’m having to go back in a second (or even third) time in a day on call.  Granted, I don’t mind at all if it’s a “true” emergency but with my IR practice half the calls are semiurgent at best.

    Bottom line, if I had to do it over again I’d probably have kept my radius from the hospital at 20 min.

    #176733 Reply
    portlandia portlandia 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 401
    Joined: 07/07/2017

    I have yet to meet a person that regrets living too close to the hospital-assuming they aren’t dodging gunfire as noted in another thread.

    Agree with Anne that you should rent a place close to the hospital to start out.

     

     

     

    #176737 Reply
    PhysicianOnFIRE PhysicianOnFIRE 
    Moderator
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1538
    Joined: 01/08/2016

    I might go to the hospital and back 10 different times in a weekend. Living three minutes away, that’s an hour of commuting (or about 1:20 on my bicycle) in three days.

    Living 20 minutes away, as most of my partners do, that would be 6 hours and 40 minutes of commuting in a weekend.

    If you consider the total cost of driving to be 50 cents a mile, my 15 miles driven (if I drive which I do half the year) costs $7.50. Living 10 miles away, those trips would cost $100 a weekend.

    There’s also the luxury of not having to drop what you’re doing immediately to be at the hospital within 20 or 30 minutes or whatever your bylaws allow. I can finish dinner or take a quick shower and brush my teeth, etc…

    40-something anesthesiologist and personal finance blogger @ https://physicianonfire.com [Part of the WCI Network] Find me on Twitter: @physicianonfire

    FIRE. Financial Independence. Retire Early.

    #176741 Reply
    PhysicianOnFIRE PhysicianOnFIRE 
    Moderator
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1538
    Joined: 01/08/2016

    I might go to the hospital and back 10 different times in a weekend. Living three minutes away, that’s an hour of commuting (or about 1:20 on my bicycle) in three days.

    Living 20 minutes away, as most of my partners do, that would be 6 hours and 40 minutes of commuting in a weekend.

    If you consider the total cost of driving to be 50 cents a mile, my 15 miles driven (if I drive which I do half the year) costs $7.50. Living 10 miles away, those trips would cost $100 a weekend.

    There’s also the luxury of not having to drop what you’re doing immediately to be at the hospital within 20 or 30 minutes or whatever your bylaws allow. I can finish dinner or take a quick shower and brush my teeth, etc…

    40-something anesthesiologist and personal finance blogger @ https://physicianonfire.com [Part of the WCI Network] Find me on Twitter: @physicianonfire

    FIRE. Financial Independence. Retire Early.

    #176742 Reply
    Avatar Vesalius 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 16
    Joined: 11/11/2018

    In the past I lived about 35 minutes from the hospital.  It was ok, but it did become a pain after a while.  I now live within 5 minutes and I love it.  I can go in for a meeting on a day off with pleasure, and make it back home for lunch with my spouse.  Life is good these days…

    #176751 Reply
    Avatar Panscan 
    Participant
    Status: Resident
    Posts: 1092
    Joined: 03/18/2017

    not even just about call. think about if you live 10 min away vs 20. that’s an hour and a half every week of time you’re saving at minimum with no call considerations. 10 minutes vs 30 minutes? over 3 hours a week minimum. then compare yourself to the people who choose to commute an hour. It’s insanity….

     

     

    #176760 Reply

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