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Five Ways to Ensure Your Success as a New Practice Owner

June 03, 2018

As a dentist, you’ve invested years in your education and training. You possess the passion and skills to provide your patients with the best care possible. However, when it comes to starting or acquiring your first practice, new challenges will likely come your way: finances, insurance, leases, legal concerns, and a host of other topics you may not have explored in depth. How do you navigate everything involved in launching a new practice successfully?

1. Engage Experienced and Knowledgeable Advisors from the Start

The purchase of a practice is a major event in your career and should be treated with as much care as a residency or internship. There are no second chances for your launch! Learn everything you can from people who have been there. A team approach with an attorney and accountant familiar with dental practices and transitions will help you focus on the details necessary to be successful.

2. Do Your Due Diligence

Before you purchase a practice, make sure you know what you’re getting into. A thorough valuation by an experienced dental appraiser or consultant is key. Put your team of advisors to work for you by collecting data and information on the practice and helping you ask the right questions. From practice philosophy to PPO participation, prepaid accounts, staff pay and benefits, and statistics, your trusted advisors will assist you in interpreting the information a seller provides you and ultimately determine whether this is the practice for you.

3. Know Your Lease

All leases are not the same! Be sure to engage your advisors to review the terms of any lease for your new office. Whether a trusted attorney or a real estate broker that specializes in healthcare leases, having someone with knowledge of healthcare, the local market, and customary terms will protect your financial interests and ensure your success.

4. Don't Rush It

Transition does not mean immediate change. Take stock of the practice, the staff, and the patients. Learn what you can from the seller and try to evaluate what works and what doesn’t before you decide on the direction you want to take the practice. Build relationships and improve your skills. Learn, then do.

5. Pay Attention to the Little Things

Details can make or break your new practice. Give proper time and consideration to selecting your entity; setting up payroll; obtaining proper insurance, transitioning dental and financial software, credit card processing, utility accounts, practice website and social media. If these tasks are done sooner versus later, you will set the stage for a much smoother transition.

Acquiring a new practice is a major decision, and preparation and planning are crucial to your success. Collier & Associates can connect you with the resources and advice you need to navigate these details. Contact us for more information, or subscribe to the C&A Newsletter for ongoing expert advice for savvy dentists like yourself.

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