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*Official student loan pay off thread*

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  • MPMD MPMD 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2582
    Joined: 05/01/2017

    Ended up paying off all the debt 14 months after my grad.

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    Dude. That is awesome.

     I would have been tempted to work a few extra years in rural PA to build up a nest egg.

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    Yeah me too, but still, very impressive.

    #206599 Reply
    Liked by Zaphod, Tim
    Avatar hightower 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1498
    Joined: 12/07/2016

    Hey all! Interventional radiologist and wife is dentist. I grad in 2017 and wife had been practicing for about 4 yrs at that point. Total debt was in 700k range for us both. We moved to a rural area of pa, my parents home. Lived in an upstairs bedroom and shared living expenses. I worked a w2 job as an IR with substantial o/t money, earned approx 35-50 k / month. Wife worked in super busy private dental office, making approx 25-30k month. We had also had some savings from past few yrs. Ended up paying off all the debt 14 months after my grad. Now we’ve moved to HCOL west coast. Wife is working part-time. I’m working FT making approx 29k/mth with decent vacation and opps for overtime work. Overall lifestyle is good and doable but expenses are pretty high. Still getting it sorted out esp after owing several thousand for last yr taxes. Keep up the loan fight! Geographic arbitrage is an excellent strategy and works!

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    Wow!  Finally, someone listened to all of the advice on these forums! 😉  But, really, wow and great work.  You really hunkered down and killed it!  That’s really amazing

    #206633 Reply
    Liked by okayplayer
    Avatar ohehlo 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 9
    Joined: 01/10/2017

    Wife and I graduated with about 300k in student loans from med school in 2010. Throughout residency and fellowship we tried to chip away at the principal, but the interest ran up on us anyway. We tried for pslf but found out that we didn’t have direct loans so did not qualify. We refinanced from 6.8% to 3.25% with sofi in our first year in practice (both physicians) with a five year pay off timeline. We each received a large bonus at the end of our first year in practice and just paid off all our student loans!

    So we paid off all of our student loans the first year in practice, made the final payment last month. It feels amazing, like a huge weight has been lifted and now we can finally start our lives and look to the future. We also managed to Max out our tax advantaged space including Roth’s and even started a nice taxable account and savings account this year, even started 529s for the kids to get a tax break in our state.

    We owe a lot to this forum and the WCI website/book/podcast. We feel like we have a big advantage over our peers who are using financial advisors and don’t seem to be making the right moves… Thanks everyone!

    Avatar AZPT 
    Participant
    Status: Other Professional
    Posts: 123
    Joined: 02/02/2019
    Splash Refinancing Bonus

    Wife and I graduated from PA and PT school in 2012. We were fortunate enough to have fully-funded Bachelor’s degrees through academic scholarships, but the combined $250,000 for our graduate programs was a gut punch once we fully realized the financial situation we had put ourselves in. I will never forget the day I was organizing my filing cabinet and came across my piles of Direct Loans statements. It was at that moment I had the realization I had just paid $150k for a degree which landed me a $55k initial job offer. That nauseating feeling has haunted me the past 7 years.

    My wife and I were the quintessential Millenials, as we had followed what we were always explicitly – and implicitly – told during our younger years: “Work hard, get a good education, and you’ll be compensated very well.” It seemed we had done everything “right”; we were in professions to “help people” and do good for our society/community, both had stable careers we trained hard for, and in the eyes of others we quite obviously must have been “rich”. But man, that monthly loan payment surely didn’t make it seem like such a good decision and it felt like those loans would never go away. Ten years ago I could have never predicted how much that debt would have weighed on me.

    The White Coat Investor books, forums, and website have completely changed the financial situation for my family. I will be forever grateful for all I have gained from this community as well as look forward to all there is still left to learn.

    With that, I am happy to say that while it took us much longer than we anticipated, but much shorter than we ever thought possible, today was our last student loan payment and we have fully paid our $250k debt. In 2019, I can admit my mood is already much different as I now arrange my filing cabinet with Thank You notes from patients and families, instead of envelopes from Direct Loans. What a different feeling that is…

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    Avatar saildawg 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 343
    Joined: 01/24/2016

    AZPT,

    Congrats!!!!

    What an awesome story, my sister in law  graduated PT school last year for $150,000 for a similar paying job.  I had a huge sit down talk with her, that did not go as well as I would have hoped.  We are certainly proud of her for working hard to graduate etc, but it is hard to hear that your hard work and education were not a wise financial decision.  I think I will circle back and touch base with her and share your story.  Any good tips or details of what you did to accomplish your payoff?  Our personal experience of accelerated student loan debt payoff does not really translate to her as we had a moderate sized hole (debt) with a big shovel (income).

    #210299 Reply
    Liked by AZPT, SLC OB, Tim
    Avatar EDDOCMOM 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 68
    Joined: 01/23/2016

    Congratulations!  I talk to my PAs and NPs all the time about their loans and needing to get rid of them ASAP.  Some listen, some don’t.  I think a lot more people are in your boat (large $ loans with small-mid $ salaries) and if you don’t get on top of it it’s all easily out of control.

     

    Great work.

    #210338 Reply
    Liked by AZPT, SLC OB, Tim
    Avatar 02Sats 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 22
    Joined: 01/09/2016

    I made my final payment on 320k of student loans last week.  I have been out in practice 2 years and 9 months.  I have also maxed 401k/BD roth/HSA emergency fund, and have a little over 200k in those. I am forever grateful for finding WCI in my last year of residency to help set me straight. I haven’t necessarily lived like a resident, but I live on less than half my take-home salary. So I guess I have been following POF’s “Live on Half” challenge, which I am going to keep doing.  Thanks everybody!

    Avatar AZPT 
    Participant
    Status: Other Professional
    Posts: 123
    Joined: 02/02/2019

    AZPT,

    Congrats!!!!

    What an awesome story, my sister in law  graduated PT school last year for $150,000 for a similar paying job.  I had a huge sit down talk with her, that did not go as well as I would have hoped.  We are certainly proud of her for working hard to graduate etc, but it is hard to hear that your hard work and education were not a wise financial decision.  I think I will circle back and touch base with her and share your story.  Any good tips or details of what you did to accomplish your payoff?  Our personal experience of accelerated student loan debt payoff does not really translate to her as we had a moderate sized hole (debt) with a big shovel (income).

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    I PM’d you.

    #211029 Reply
    Liked by Tim
    Avatar Dr.Blue 
    Participant
    Status: Resident
    Posts: 16
    Joined: 06/05/2017

    You all are my inspiration here. I was fortunate not to have debt but my wife was not as lucky. She had consolidated her loans to federal during the end of her 2nd year of residency and making payments with the plan to utilize PSLF. Starting rate was near 360k-400k and now as a Pg6 the level is over $530k. Have a little one now and job prospects to find a PSLF qualifying job for her are limited as a neonatologist and both of us at full time hours would be tough. So we have decided to refi and knock it out and be done with it. Pains me to have those 50 PSLF qualifying payments down the drain but being free from these loans sooner seems like a good feeling. Fortunately we had a side fund ready to pay off loans so we will pay down $130k of it and refi the $400k.

    We plan to refi with Commonbond at 2.99% variable rate and 300k with First Republic Bank when we can qualify for a fixed 2.20% 5 year term when she finishes her fellowship. Will tackle the variable loan by a year and probably the 300k by 48 months as there is a bonus rebate for early payoff on interest paid. Hope to report a success story on here soon!

    #211483 Reply
    CordMcNally CordMcNally 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 3007
    Joined: 01/03/2017

    You all are my inspiration here. I was fortunate not to have debt but my wife was not as lucky. She had consolidated her loans to federal during the end of her 2nd year of residency and making payments with the plan to utilize PSLF. Starting rate was near 360k-400k and now as a Pg6 the level is over $530k. Have a little one now and job prospects to find a PSLF qualifying job for her are limited as a neonatologist and both of us at full time hours would be tough. So we have decided to refi and knock it out and be done with it. Pains me to have those 50 PSLF qualifying payments down the drain but being free from these loans sooner seems like a good feeling. Fortunately we had a side fund ready to pay off loans so we will pay down $130k of it and refi the $400k.

    We plan to refi with Commonbond at 2.99% variable rate and 300k with First Republic Bank when we can qualify for a fixed 2.20% 5 year term when she finishes her fellowship. Will tackle the variable loan by a year and probably the 300k by 48 months as there is a bonus rebate for early payoff on interest paid. Hope to report a success story on here soon!

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    Best of luck. Continue to make the same decision every day that you want to pay off those loans and you’ll be done before you know it. And you’ll thank yourself.

    “But investing isn’t about beating others at their game. It’s about controlling yourself at your own game.”
    ― Benjamin Graham, The Intelligent Investor

    #211495 Reply
    Liked by AZPT, EndoRobert
    Avatar saildawg 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 343
    Joined: 01/24/2016

    You all are my inspiration here. I was fortunate not to have debt but my wife was not as lucky. She had consolidated her loans to federal during the end of her 2nd year of residency and making payments with the plan to utilize PSLF. Starting rate was near 360k-400k and now as a Pg6 the level is over $530k. Have a little one now and job prospects to find a PSLF qualifying job for her are limited as a neonatologist and both of us at full time hours would be tough. So we have decided to refi and knock it out and be done with it. Pains me to have those 50 PSLF qualifying payments down the drain but being free from these loans sooner seems like a good feeling. Fortunately we had a side fund ready to pay off loans so we will pay down $130k of it and refi the $400k.

    We plan to refi with Commonbond at 2.99% variable rate and 300k with First Republic Bank when we can qualify for a fixed 2.20% 5 year term when she finishes her fellowship. Will tackle the variable loan by a year and probably the 300k by 48 months as there is a bonus rebate for early payoff on interest paid. Hope to report a success story on here soon!

    Click to expand…

    Sounds like you have a good plan, best of luck

    #211499 Reply
    Avatar bonebrokemefix 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 61
    Joined: 04/10/2017

    Sent in my last payment today. Refinanced 270K worth of med school loans 6/2017. Finished it up just in time to replace it with practice buy-in debt, but a number of things make that more palatable for sure! Now one last small chunk on a car loan, and then we’ll be debt free on anything not appreciating.

    So thankful for the advice and insight the board provides!

    And now to make my ridiculous steakhouse reservation to celebrate.

    CordMcNally CordMcNally 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 3007
    Joined: 01/03/2017
    And now to make my ridiculous steakhouse reservation to celebrate.

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    Funny you mention going to a steakhouse. My wife was going to take me to get a steak wherever I wanted when I finished my loans. We ended up at Texas Roadhouse. I still feel like they make a great prime rib and I stand by that statement.

    “But investing isn’t about beating others at their game. It’s about controlling yourself at your own game.”
    ― Benjamin Graham, The Intelligent Investor

    #212815 Reply
    Lordosis Lordosis 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2113
    Joined: 02/11/2019
    And now to make my ridiculous steakhouse reservation to celebrate. 

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    Funny you mention going to a steakhouse. My wife was going to take me to get a steak wherever I wanted when I finished my loans. We ended up at Texas Roadhouse. I still feel like they make a great prime rib and I stand by that statement.

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    That is the first place I had a Montana Mule which is basically a Moscow Mule with whiskey in place of vodka.  I never went back to Moscow.

    “Never let your sense of morals prevent you from doing what is right.”

    #212924 Reply
    Liked by AZPT, Zaphod
    Avatar RandomDoc 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 47
    Joined: 06/04/2016

    I’m very happy to finally post this. We are a dual physician couple. She is 5 yrs out of training and I am 3 yrs out. This month we finished our loan payoff journey and as WCI would say we finally finished medical school. In total we paid off ~$560,000 in student loans and ~ $60,000 in car loans. Now our only debt is our mortgage which is <1x our gross annual income. Many thanks to WCI and to the many people on this forum who I have learned a great deal from. The financial discipline we have established will now be transitioned to building our taxable account. It is very freeing to have those debts gone. I have spent most of my adult life accumulating/transferring/stressing about/paying off student loan debt. I am looking forward to the next part of the journey which definitely will not include educational/car loan debt.

    Again, many thanks to WCI and the WCI community. To those of you still paying off your school loans, keep on plugging away. The blueprint works. It is simple, but not easy.

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