Medical school debt?

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    Just joined, HI 🙂

    I am still in the early stages of this and was wondering if someone could give me some honest feedback on exactly how much their medical school debts are? How long do you think it will take you to pay it back? Does the amount of the debt prevent you from working part-time? What percentage of your monthly take home salary is it? Any tips to minimize loans, I have kids and will probably have to factor in at least $1500 a month for daycare/babysitting (at least till they are in school, but I’ll still need after school care or will i?)

    I’m sorry to be personal, I don’t want to offend but I want an honest picture of what I’m getting into finance wise.



    Hi – most of my friends from residency, and myself, owe about $100,000 from medical school loans. This is tuition for a public med school (where the state pays quite a bit of your tuition) plus loans for living expenses for four years. My payments will be around $1600 a month when I start paying them (gulp!) next month, out of a pretax take-home paycheck of $10,000 a month. That loan payment is more than twice my mortgage though… and also means we won’t be moving into a larger house until we need the space!

    The standard repayment on Stafford loans is over ten years and this is set for you by the loan company. I would not consider paying them off over a longer period of time, although you can if you consolidate the loans, because then you pay back so much more in interest. As it stands now over ten years I will repay around $160,000 – that’s sixty thousand in interest!!! So my husband and I are going to continue to live on a resident’s salary for a while so we can pay the debt off faster, and thus pay less interest. Were I to consolidate, they want to spread the payments over 15 or 20 years – thus the repayment is closer to $200,000. No thanks. There is no penalty for early repayment on loan consolidations though.

    I am now a fulltime internist making $125,000 a year, plus another $40,000 in loan repayment over the next five years from the group I work for. I for one was definitely not able to work part time because of my loans. Boy, would I like to! I also have considered leaving medicine a number of times, either due to burn out or just curiousity about what else in life is out there… but I am unable to, because of the debt. I love what I do now though – just residency and medical school are so difficult sometimes, and you feel like you can only delay gratification for so long!

    Hope this helps.


    Everyone I know, self included, owes over $100,000 in med school loans. I agree with the stats in the above post.

    Some residency programs offer a minimal form of loan repayment for each year of residency completed. That played a part in my ranking of programs. Pre-tax the offer was $5000 per year, but after tax it was more like $3000. Still, every little bit helps!


    I finished med school with about $125,000 in debt. Our payments were about $1800 a month. We just bought a house, so we refinanced and made all of the loans 30-year loans. Now we are paying about $1000 a month. However, as soon as I’m financially on my feet, I plan to double my payments, because we could save a huge amount a money (well over $100,000) if we pay it off faster. Student loans are much more understanding than things like mortgages, so if you have a financial hardship, you can always defer them for a year, etc…
    It seemed like a lot of money at first, but now it seems like not such a big deal!


    Thanks all! These posts got me wondering about salaries. Does anyone else care to share what their salaries are?

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