I used Free Tax USA for the first time yesterday to file my income taxes. I’ll share with you my estimated numbers. I haven’t filed yet because I want to compare the numbers to TurboTax, which I have used since 2007.
This software should cost me less than $100 since I would get the deluxe edition. It usually costs me over $200 with Turbotax. And I used to pay $1,500 to my CPA. My friend N. pays her CPA $4k to do her taxes. So, I’m not unhappy with $200 for TurboTax but want to see what else is out there.
2018 total income
I’ve been a physician sole proprietor all of 2018 and earned a gross of $109,000. All of the income was 1099-MISC income except for $2,900 which was employed income for the work I did as a college professor.
Teladoc income – $37,400
This was my main income source for 2018. I’m not sure how many hours of work I did for Teladoc, but it’s a fantastic way to earn easy money seeing patient online. Telemedicine is definitely owned by Teladoc – if I needed more money, I’d consider investing in their company either directly (stocks) or indirectly (management position).
Here is my Teladoc workflow ($5) for any telemedicine physician who wants to maximize their income on Teladoc. It took me a long time to get up to 10-12 patients an hour and I feel like I’ve finally mastered it. It’s very easy to earn $175-250/hour with Teladoc. You can do it with a laptop or your app from damn near anywhere. Use your VPN and you can do the work from any country, such as Spain.
JustAnswer income – $23,900
My highest income in one month on JustAnswer was $7k and my lowest, $250. What I love about JustAnswer is that I can work on their platform as much or as little as I like. There are no time commitments. I can offer medical expert advice to people from all over the world and I can do this from a laptop or phone from anywhere in the world.
I have multiple JustAnswer workflows for sale on my shop link.
Healthcare consulting income – $22,440
This income comes from 2 main clients. The income has fluctuated over the year and I only started doing the work since August. Not bad for healthcare consulting work. I remember when I only had a couple of hundred dollars of income in an entire year from this kind of work.
If you want to get started in healthcare consulting, read my blog posts on the topic. Figure out what topic you want to specialize in, whore yourself out to your first few clients, and learn how to bill your client so that you avoid the mistakes I made. This a great alternative career for physicians.
Roman income – $14,800
I loved working for Roman – what a great telemedicine company. I really enjoyed working with their medical director and found the platform easy to navigate. Everything about that company is smart. If they continue on the same path, they will be one of the biggest hitters in that space.
The income was easy, at $15 a pop, all I had to do is review a case, click approve, and collect my money.
Here is my podcast recording of my Roman experience and workflow. And here is a blog post I wrote about them.
Doctor on Demand income – $5,000
I interviewed for a part-time and full-time position with these guys. In hindsight, I’m glad I didn’t take the job but it’s another solid telemedicine company to work for. They aren’t the most competitive in this space and I don’t expect them to remain a big player. But they are committed to patients and work hard to prevent excessive medication prescribing.
Portland Community College income – $2,900
My community college teaching experience was solid. I learned a lot and earned an insanely good pay at $60/hour, working only 4 hours a week with full benefits. Teaching feels natural to me. I don’t get shy speaking in front of people, I’m funny as fuck, and I like making powerpoint slides.
The downside to teaching at a community college is that it’s nearly impossible to get into the job. There is so much competition for it and the administrators are simply not motivated to bring in better teachers. But I managed. This is something that’ll be on my resume forever. Even if I lose my MD, I’ll be worth $60/hour at a community college.
Oscar income – $2,200
When it comes to telemedicine companies, Oscar is by far the best one. Why? They are both an insurance company, a brick and mortar clinic, and they utilize technology to manage their patients. You cannot get more progressive than Oscar.
Their medical director is an amazing woman – I don’t know how she juggles so many fucking responsibilities at once, but I learned a lot from her and highly recommend anyone interested in getting started in telemedicine to consider doing work with Oscar.
It’s companies like Oscar which will turn healthcare around. It’s companies like Teladoc which will make investors rich. And it’s companies like Roman which erase the stigma of certain diseases. I’ve learned a lot in this telemedicine space; I’m very grateful and humbled by this experience.
2018 estimated business/personal expenses
The tax software calculated my total deductions at $27,000 – $9k for business expenses and $18k for standard deductions. This seems rather small. And that’s why I want to confirm this with TurboTax.
I deducted off my legal expenses, my medical board fines, some travel expenses, my website hosting expenses, part of my cell phone, home office expenses, and my health insurance premiums.
2018 estimated income taxes
The tax software lists my taxable income at $38,000 and lists my tax burden at $18k. So there is something wrong there. Though I don’t think anything is wrong with the final tax burden – $18k seems right. It’s the way the summary was listed which is either confusing or I just didn’t get it.
I sent in $11k in estimated taxes in 2018 and according to FreeTaxUSA, I will owe about $7k – for a total of the $18k I mentioned above. That would put me in the 16% range, very similar to what I owed in 2017.
I will run the same numbers on TurboTax and once I file and I’ll have the final numbers which I’ll share with you guys here.
Experimenting with numbers
What I like about a dry-run like this is that I can manipulate the numbers as much as I want until I get the most beneficial results. For example, I can do the math to see if it’s worthwhile to max out my Traditional IRA or my Solo 401k.
I can then look and see if maxing out my HSA is worthwhile. I basically played around with the numbers until I hit the sweet spot for the most amount of money in my pocket.