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May 2019 Spending

My total spending for May 2019 comes out to a little over $8,000. This include money I’ve invested, taxes, rental income property, donations, and business spending.

The real overall spending is $1,339. This amount includes:

  • rent in SDC ($743)
  • health insurance ($70)
  • groceries ($268)
  • entertainment ($197)
  • gym ($61)

Living in SDC is cheap. Most of Spain is affordable but when you try to live inside the major cities, places like Seville and Barcelona get rather expensive.

Core Spending vs Overall Spending

I’ve proven to myself that I can live comfortably on this core spending. I spend more money on a gym than health insurance – that makes sense to me at 41.

Life’s about living. And I’ve lived better in the past 3 years than I have in a long time. Residency was fun and the first few years of being attending were amazing. But this is a whole new level.


Health insurance in the US would be about $300/month for me. And that just means that I would be given the right to spend another $7,000/year for my deductible – rather useless.

In Spain it only costs me €55 for access to both public + private. I could pay less – €25/mo – but this combination plan is required by my non-lucrative visa.

I have some hypertension which I’m managing with exercise and diet. Though honestly, it’s all stress. I can eat like shit and get minimal activity and it’ll be in the 100/60 range when I’m not stressed.


I’ve gotten used to making my own food at home. Restaurant options in the US were disastrous; even in a city like Portland.

My grocery spending is my main food expense. But I go to a new restaurant here once a week, usually on Sundays, like today. Haven’t decided where yet, but it only sets me back €7-10 for a menú al día which includes a drink.

Speaking of alcohol – I’ve stopped drinking. Gives me too much anxiety now. I think it’s all the medical board stuff that has me on edge. A glass of wine is great to wind down with, but for the next 2 days my rebound anxiety is ridiculous.


€10 for 7GB. That’s what I pay for my prepago plan from Orange Móvil. 7GB is more than enough. I’ve used 711MB and have another 2 weeks to go before renewing.


My gym is only 3 miles from my house. It’s about a 50-minute walk from here and the scenery is pretty. Heading there right after I finish this post.

I’ll consider getting an electric bike if I decide to stay here long-term. That will depend on how my visa renewal goes and how things go with the medical boards stateside.


Rent for a 2-br here is about €300/month. A super nice, modern place would be €600.

My buddy just rented a really nice 1-br in Valencia for €700/month. That’s a pretty good deal for that city.

I’ve written about housing costs if I decide to buy my condo outright. HOA dues and annual property taxes are very low. Housing is rather cheap in this city as well.

Sustainability of Spending

My burn rate is decent at around $1,500/month. I like to think of my spending as an income stream problem. I want to have enough of an income steam to replace my core spending.

Once I have that problem solved then I can focus on increasing that income stream to cover elective spending. Things like entertainment, travel, donations, and more investing.

Income Streams

Financial independence used to be a net worth paradigm in my head. I now look at it as a passive income system based on my specific investing style.

I am not a restauranteur, I’m not home flipper. I’m a passive index fund investor and just now slowly branching into local private equity deals.

How much can I earn from these investments? What passive income flow will these provide?

Besides investing, there are a lot of things I enjoy trading my time for. The artificial intelligence consulting that I’m doing is right up my alley. I really enjoy telemedicine as well. As long as I do, these are easy income options for me to pursue.

Passive Income Math

From my securities investment portfolio I would be comfortable spending about 3% a year. It’s sitting at around $700k right now. So I can spend about $1,750/month.

My rental income property in Portland is making about 4.2% of net passive income. That’s another $500 from my real estate portfolio.

My healthcare consulting work is making me about $5,000/month. Is it passive? No. But it’s something I’d do for free. I enjoy it as much as I enjoyed medicine from 2006-2012.

If you want to get started in healthcare consulting, check out the course I have for sale on it.

Next, the products I sell on this website are generating an easy $1,000/month. It takes very little work on my part but it definitely requires work. Again, it’s work that I enjoy doing so I see it only growing in the future.

The last source of income is really not passive but I do it because I need the money for my legal fees, battling the medical boards. Just-Answer is a great source of income for non-clinical work and I make a very easy $3,000-5,000/month from it.

Check out the tutorial I have on it if you’re interested.

6 replies on “May 2019 Spending”

I used to pay $185/month for a gym in San Diego and then $80/month for a bouldering gym in Portland. All were fantastic values and I didn’t find them to be expensive. I think $300/month is a lot for health insurance but a lot more people seem to readily pay that than a gym membership. This is a rock climbing and bouldering gym only, it’s €45 per month, month to month. I had to buy some chalk so I think that added to it. Haven’t found anything cheaper than this. The one in Barcelona, the Sharma gym, was €50/month. There is no weights or anything else impressive to speak of.

What were your other expenses? Are they discretionary?

Good for you with the consulting. I think it’s awesome you can make that much from consulting work without keeping your toe in the water clinically at all. Amazing.

Tell us about the private equity deals!

Taxes, business spending, HOA dues for my rental property, donations, and about $5,000 of money which I invested. $2,500 is for a new private business venture with a buddy. And another $2,500 for a real estate purchase.
Later this year I should be investing in a friend’s coffee business; she’s expanding and adding a new line of products and a major distributor will be picking it up – we haven’t hashed out the details, probably a $25k investment. And a friend who recently moved to spain is looking for up to $50k to start a new restaurant. She’s a successful restaurateur and I have dibs on her business as well. I’ll be checking out her venture later this month, in fact. I’ll write a few posts on that stuff coming up soon.

Could you share the reasons that you are battling the medical boards? I’ve never spent $1 in legal fees in this category in over 35 years in clinical practice. Are these legal fees somehow related to “sustainable medicine”?

Here is the category for the 40+ posts I have on my dealings with the medical boards. It’s great that you haven’t had to deal with them and hope that you never will.
This website actually saved my ass because the California Medical Board attorney had it admitted as evidence that I had no remorse for what I had done wrong. The judge who heard the case admitted the 1 page which the attorney wanted to admit and I requested that the entire site be admitted if that were the case. My request was accepted and naturally from reading the site the Administrative Law Judge could clearly see that I know exactly what I did wrong and that my intention was 100% geared towards helping the patient.
It’s the best reason I can give for a physician to have their own platform.

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