Some dentists are happy to go through their dentistry careers as associates. They earn a salary, and they may not think of owning their practice at all.
On the other hand, some dentists aspire to own dental practice and make a living out of it.
There are various reasons for and against starting a dental practice, but there are many things to consider before setting it up.
Below, we’re going to share these aspects with you to make the most well-informed decision after reading our guide.
Starting and operating a dental clinic requires hard work and persistence as it comes with its share of challenges, says the family dentist Dr. Pawlowski.
Steps for Starting a Dental Practice
The following steps will help you in setting up your dental practice:
- Have a business plan in place.
This is the first thing that you need to do: put your idea of starting a dental practice on paper. It is imperative to have a proper business plan, as writing your dreams, ideas, and aspirations on paper is a significant step to make it all happen.
Sit down with your advisor or partner if you have one and clarify the goals and objectives you want to achieve with your business. The business plan will guide you throughout setting up the company and will help you when securing finances, especially at the banks. It is crucial for the foundation and future success.
- Find a location for your practice.
You may have many smart business ideas and plans, but if you do not have a location to set it up, it will be challenging to make your dream of owning a dental practice come through. Your business plan should outline the type of customers your business will be serving, as this will help you find the perfect place to set up your business.
It may take some time to find the perfect location. This is because you need to negotiate prices with agents and decide whether the business will be located in the city’s outskirts or the center of your desired town.
What you need to do is to research the location of your customers and the visibility of the practice. You do not want to set it up in a place where your patients cannot find it.
- Find a support team.
Once the idea unfolds into real life from a business plan, you will be required to hire a team to support you. This includes a design team for branding and a marketing agency for designing your website.
Although you might not think you need a full time to manage your practice online, it is essential to captivate an audience and your clients with an online presence.
- How will you finance your practice?
Having associate dentists can be part of your business model, but you need to find a way to finance your practice. To ask for financing from the bank, you will be required to present your detailed financial forecasts, which are in the business plan.
It is advised that you approach more banks as well as take your budget seriously. Sticking to the budget will enable your business to go off the ground successfully.
- Get your team together.
Building a team of dental associates, administrative staff, and nurses are essential for success. Ensure that the team will stick around for the long term and are dedicated to the practice. Hire a recruiter if need be to help you with the process.
- How will you get customers?
Now you have your business plan, found your location, found funding, and started your brand. The next step is to find customers and for that, you need to be very creative. Get your local community to be involved through seminars, freebies, social media, and have an open day so that potential clients can book appointments.
Give discounts and other incentives so that you can start your practice well.
How much will it cost you to start a dental practice?
There are many costs to consider to set up a successful dental practice. Note that the following values are not the exact amount but an average of setting up a dental practice:
- Purchase price – this includes valuation fees of between $1,500-3,500, solicitor fees of between $5,000 – 15,000, accountancy and bank fees of around $2,000, and bank solicitors, which can be up to $3,000.
- Materials – $40,000
- Lab fees – $36,000
- Staff costs – $82,000
- Other costs (including associates fees) – $275,000
Understanding what is needed in setting up a dental practice is essential in having a successful one. Know the costs involved first hand, and if you can afford it, go ahead and write a business plan. This will help you throughout the process of setting up the practice and operating it successfully.