Posted on Sep 12, 2011
Image Credit: © Dreamstime.com
Posted on Sep 12, 2011
By Paul A. Maimone, MBA, D&M Practice Sales
Preparing your dental practice for sale is much like preparing your house for sale. The real estate agents tell you that you have to create “curb appeal” to generate the right impression, and that appearance is key. They tell you to remove the clutter, to make your home neat and clean, and to price your home right. That is great advice to sell your home, and it is great advice to sell your practice. Think esthetics, eye appeal and neatness. Buyers are as interested in the overall look and feel of the practice as they are in the financials and patient records.
Start at your dental office front door. Is it worn, is the hardware old and tarnished, has your door signage seen a better day? Then paint or stain the front door, put on a new doorknob, and make sure signage is in good shape. When selling a dental practice, first impressions with a dental practice buyer are very important.
Next, take a walk through your dental office. Is the furniture in the waiting room worn and frayed? How’s the paint on the walls? What about the carpeting? How is the lighting? Is the office clean? Really clean? Is the office cluttered? If the answer is yes, then get to work! Replace that worn out waiting room furniture, paint the walls and replace some carpeting, change burned out bulbs and make sure that the office has good lighting. Lighting makes all the difference.
Should you completely remodel the office? Maybe. If the office will look and feel better, or if it will make the office more ergonomic, then yes. Your patients will enjoy it, the staff will enjoy it and so will you. Just as in real estate, easy renovations can not only be self-liquidating expenses when preparing to sell, they can actually increase profitability. A little drywall and attractive lighting to enhance the reception desk area can increase the value of your dental practice considerably, in comparison to other dental practices for sale. Qualified support from dental practice brokers who have viewed all these efforts first hand provide the best advice.
Now that you’ve tackled the facility and furniture, it is time to take a look at your equipment. Is all your dental equipment in working order? Are the chairs torn? If you were a dental practice buyer would you buy your office with broken down, worn out, torn, antiquated equipment or would you be more inclined to buy a dental practice with equipment that is in working order, in good shape and manufactured in this century? Get a maintenance guy to come in and go through your equipment. Fix what’s fixable, replace what is not. Make it work or replace it. You don’t have to spend a fortune. If you replace it, you don’t have to buy new. There are several reputable used dental equipment resellers that can replace an op for you with refurbished equipment at a reasonable cost.
When all is said and done, do the final touches like air fresheners, fresh flowers, coffee in the waiting room, and I’ve even know a few sellers who have added a portable cookie maker in the waiting room. When it comes to a successful dental practice sale, it’s often the small details that make a difference, so pay attention to them.