Sunday, January 5, 2014

How I paid off Medical School Loans in Two Years. Pay off $200,000 student loans in 2 years. Part 1.

Wellllll, I'm not quite there yet. This has been a blog post that I have been waiting very patiently to put up. The picture above explains how I felt when graduating from medical school in 2012. The money from being an attending seemed so far away, and the reality of student loans came full force.

The man in charge of student loans at our school had no way to relate to us soon to be medical school graduates. He said, " I did not have to deal with this when I graduated from school." He showed use a calculation where our 200K in debt would ballon to closer to 400K or more if we used the total 10 years for repayment. We were all graduating from a private medical school in an expensive city. Our loans averaged close to $200,000 and may more- including myself, who do not come from privileged families - had even more debt than that. Probably around $240. We had to do atleast 3-7 years of residency, getting paid way below what someone of our education level should be paid, before we can even think about tackling these loans. It was SCARY.

2 years later, I am around 3/4 done paying off medical school. I am fortunate because my husband is a physician in practice. But the main reason we are able to do this is sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice! We are living well below our means. We don't have cable. I don't have a smart phone. We don't drive luxury cars. We live in cheap housing. We don't take excessive or expensive trips. I buy and sell things on Ebay. I never buy clothing at retail.

This I believe is the key to getting out of debt and getting out quick.

My husband and I realized that financial freedom is more important than ANY material good. I don't need an expensive car to show off my worth as a person. An average car will do just fine.

The plan is to pay off medical school in the next 2-3 months. I wanted to write this post to inspire others to make similar changes to be debt free quicker.

Good luck to everyone! Whether college, law school, or medical school debt. 

Doctor's Advice: Shellac Gel Manicures. Are they safe?

First of all, Happy New Year to my readers! 

I recently got a free Shellac manicure from a local salon. I took advantage of their offer during my Christmas break and added a little bit of fun with a cute Chanel add- on. The cost of the service is $30. My frugal self would never shell out such money on a service!

They told me the Shellac mani would last for about 2 weeks- which is accurate. Around the two week mark, my nails grew long enough that you could clearly see a line of demarcation- making me tempted to start peeling it off. They say that you need to dip your finger in acetone to take the polish off, but I was able to peel it off on my own with no added equipment.

Now, although I loved the look of the polish when I initially got it, or maybe I was just excited because I had not had a mani in so long, this is NOT a service that I would recommend. Here is why....

1. They actually use UV light (the same UV light used in tanning beds) to set the polish. UV light = cancer risk. Now I tan very easily, and I noticed when I got back home that my fingers looked slightly tanner. NOT a good look!

2. For some reason, the polish did not dry right on me- when I would take my fingers from under the UV light, the polish would have ridges in it - forcing the nail attendant to start all over - dipping my fingers in acetone, scraping off the polish, and starting from step 1. The whole process took over an hour... who has time for that... Not I!

3. During the step of scraping off the polish- they use metal tools. These metals tooks look verrryyy similar to the equipment used in a dental office or even in the operating room. I began to question how CLEAN are these tools? I know they dip them in cleaner--- but are they realllyyyy that clean. This is something that turned me off to the whole experience.

4. When they scrape off the polish, the tools go beyond your cuticle... a littttle to close for comfort. I am sure people get cuts all the time from these metal tools. This makes you are high risk for infection.

5. The gel is actually BAKED into your top layer of nail. While this may be OK for once in a while, if you are getting it done all the time, the damage is equivalent to multiple dye jobs on your hair, or use of excess heat.

As for me.... from now on I will stick to my regular nail polish!