4 Physicians

The Tale of 4 Physicians Began as a thought exercise to measure the impact of lifestyle (spending) on the ability to become financially independent.  The post seemed to strike a chord with readers, as evidenced by its popularity.

I figured it would be fun to play puppet master with the lives of Drs. A, B, C, and D, as they went on to have their financial lives redirected by a series of life-altering decisions.  I will keep a collection of their adventures and misadventures here for easy reference.

The original post:


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Followup posts:

3 thoughts on “4 Physicians”

  1. Bob, I got chest pain reading that. You are getting a great sales job on the insurance, bet your broker loves you! My total insurance bill for last year (car, home, boat, life, umbrella, rental property coverage) was $4,800. I dropped my disability policy ($3200 annual) because my new part-time gig had a better plan. Health plan is through work and costs about $12,000 / yr for family of 5.

    Cars have very basic coverage (2 kids driving) with no collision coverage (drive used cars, not work more than $10k each). Rely on the umbrella for liability coverage and it is pennies on the dollar.

    Get a new broker, only buy coverage you need. Before this job, when I paid everything out of pocket my costs were about $18,000.

    I suspect you have other bigger issues keeping you from reducing your expenses. Home? Colleges? Daily discretionary spending?

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  3. I am very embarrassed to say that I must be terrible at frugality, and not for any reason I can figure. I have spent a year with quicken to see where it all goes. It’s expenses of 22k to 35k per month. A big chunk is home car life disability insurance. Its like 50k per year. I had to have high coverage for cars (keep safe my nest egg) and high life(leave my kids something) etc. I’ve got 2 still in college, that’s some of it, but I’m not going out to dinner a lot or feeding race horses or anything like that. I net about 45k per month after taxes (my wife works too), so I still save, but even if I halve the expenses at retirement to 15k, I would still need 5-6 million and I’m only 1/3 the way there with 7 years to go. I think I need therapy.

    • You’ve got great income, but spending is right up there with it! In two to three months, you spend nearly as much as Dr. A spends all year. $50,000 for insurances is extreme; I’m guessing you’ve got a whole life policy. Disability on a large income can be expensive, too.

      If you haven’t, check out the post on retiring “too soon”. The outlook may not be as bad as it seems if you can pare down some of those costs.



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