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Might be FIRE (semi retired) soon getting scared to make the jump...
Old 02-13-2020, 03:16 PM   #1
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Might be FIRE (semi retired) soon getting scared to make the jump...

I’m not expecting anyone to talk me into or out of this but maybe just a few words of advice would be nice.

Married 2 physician household, kids are in college but paid for, have already paid private HS and private college full price so just getting that expenses done with is like half of my spending.

Basically something like 40% taxes, 20% savings and 40% spending on expenses etc.

I figure if we cut back on work, our taxes will go down and if we eliminate savings and paying for college we should spend less of our income. We could probably retire free and clear but at age 53/54 have a ways to go until we can get Medicare and Social Security.

We just got a substantial pay out from sale of our practice and we want to relocate to Florida 0% tax from an 8% income tax state. So right away lower taxes plus if we make even less we’d get out of the net investing income surtax and the top tax bracket.

I’d prefer to wait a bit but we got the payout and if we relocate to Florida before we spend half a year in Maryland we should save a lot of income tax on that bit.

We plan on quitting our group and do temporarily work but cut way back. I don’t really think we’d be bad off financially but would like to keep some paychecks coming so it’s not 100% from our investments.

Only thing keeping me here this long is that I’ve been here 23 years and got to know the people well and will miss some of them.
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Old 02-14-2020, 09:02 AM   #2
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You may be a good candidate for a 1 or 2 year test retirement. Go into it with the feeling that you can restart your full time work if it doesn't pan out the way you envisioned. More information would be needed to comment on the financial aspect of your early retirement.
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Old 02-14-2020, 11:59 AM   #3
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I'm not sure what specialty you are in, but for me (also a physician) I decided to go to part time, working 1 week per month, rather than 100% retirement. That gives me a little bit of income/safety net. It also keeps my head in the game just in case I decide that retirement isn't for me and I decide to come back.

Although I'm sure you realize this, I'll just state it for other readers who may not be aware: Medicine isn't like some other careers, and you can't just stop for a few years and then start back again. It's just not that simple. So I think your plan to go part time is an excellent one.

One very important thing to consider is the difficulty in obtaining a medical licence for another state if you aren't currently practicing. State medical boards typically want to know what you've been doing since high school graduation. Literally every week of your life after high school graduation has to be accounted for. It can delay the licensing process if you have large gaps of unemployment that you have to explain. It also takes months to get a medical license approved in other states, so start now if you haven't already.

The same goes for being hired by another group when you've been off for 2 years. While I'm sure that your current group would take you back because you're a known entity, other groups may be more hesitant to hire you if you've been out of practice for a while.

There are multiple companies who specialize in matching physicians with practices for locums work. You might check some of those out and see what the availability is in Florida.

Best of luck!
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Old 02-14-2020, 12:27 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rai-zero View Post
Im not expecting anyone to talk me into or out of this but maybe just a few words of advice would be nice.

Married 2 physician household, kids are in college but paid for, have already paid private HS and private college full price so just getting that expenses done with is like half of my spending.

Basically something like 40% taxes, 20% savings and 40% spending on expenses etc.

I figure if we cut back on work, our taxes will go down and if we eliminate savings and paying for college we should spend less of our income. We could probably retire free and clear but at age 53/54 have a ways to go until we can get Medicare and Social Security.

We just got a substantial pay out from sale of our practice and we want to relocate to Florida 0% tax from an 8% income tax state. So right away lower taxes plus if we make even less wed get out of the net investing income surtax and the top tax bracket.

Id prefer to wait a bit but we got the payout and if we relocate to Florida before we spend half a year in Maryland we should save a lot of income tax on that bit.

We plan on quitting our group and do temporarily work but cut way back. I dont really think wed be bad off financially but would like to keep some paychecks coming so its not 100% from our investments.

Only thing keeping me here this long is that Ive been here 23 years and got to know the people well and will miss some of them.
Welcome from another physician here. However, one that still has a couple of decades until retirement. Have you run your numbers through the firecalc? https://www.firecalc.com/ If not, please do, and see what it says. Personally, I wouldn't retire unless I was at 100%.

If you're comfortable, post how much you have saved, any debts, and your expected expenses in retirement. Many of us do post that info here since it's anonymous. If you're not comfortable, that's cool too.
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Old 02-14-2020, 01:39 PM   #5
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Dentist here.

I totally get the patient and staff relationships thing- That is something I had to deal with when I sold my practice 2 years ago. Honestly it wasn't easy, and I cried. But I also know that we are all replaceable, and my patients, my staff, and I will all go on and do fine.

What helped me in my decision to retire early was this thought....

Suppose your doctor tells you that you only have three months left to live, and you are financially set and no longer need to work anymore to earn an income. Right now are you doing exactly what you would be doing regardless of whether or not you were given this diagnosis? If not, then why not?

Like Tim McGraw’s song says - “Live Like You Were Dying”


I am living the life I had hoped to when I retired almost 2 years ago.

Is dentistry a part of it? Absolutely. I still enjoy dentistry, and it is all the better now that I practice dentistry not because I have to, but because I want to. Currently I volunteer 2 half days a week at a nearby charity clinic, and I thoroughly enjoy doing this. There is little to no stress, the patients (who are all vetted through social services) are all so grateful and never complain, there is no pressure to produce and no jumping from room to room to see a bunch of patients. You are just there doing the best you can for these patients, and they, as well as the staff are so appreciative of what you are doing. I have also ramped up my mission work abroad, and still do the occasional training/lecture for 2 dental companies.

I've also signed on to help build houses for Habitat for Humanity, but the slots fill up so quickly that I have yet to participate on an event.

The rest of my time is devoted to my Faith/music, my family, my health, and lots of traveling.

I'm really into music (sax, flute, bass) and now I'm able to practice regularly and commit to 2 weekends a month of playing at services for a couple of churches. My wife and I are also very active in several church fellowship groups.

I see my grandkids at least once a week and do all sorts of fun things with them, still see my kids regularly (the ones who are in town) and I check in regularly on my aging parents who are local.

I exercise nearly everyday- lifting, P90X type workouts, aerobics....

And we've been traveling a lot, which was my dream. I went to Cancun in early January and I just got back from a week in Orlando where I went to see the new Star Wars Galaxy's Edge section of Disney's Hollywood Studios, as well as the expanded Harry Potter World at Universal. Next week I head to Egypt.

Life is short. Cherish the time you have and make the most of it.
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Old 02-16-2020, 02:51 PM   #6
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I think many people like myself, and maybe you as a physician's feel that losing their life long professional identify as hard to comes to grips with. One minute you're a respected doctor, judge or other highly regarded profession and then the next minute you're retired and suddenly just a "regular" Joe like everyone else.

Certain professional titles last forever but ending a career you probably loved and worked hard for is extremely hard. I miss my old occupation and co-workers but it was the best thing I've ever done.
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