Purchasing a Dental Practice: What to Know

It is a very important that you give yourself due consideration in deciding where to buy, how to go about it, and what kind of practice to purchase.

Do Your research

Pace yourself. You are building the foundation of your future. Where do you want to live, how responsive will the community be to your new practice, how much of a rapport do you already have with the community?

Find the Best Location

Where would you like to live? You’ll want to be a big part of this community, so you’ll need to make sure it’s a good fit. Dentists who involve themselves in community events and organizations are usually successful as they are meeting people and networking all the while. And ensuring a shorter commute could also pay off. Trading off time spent in commute with time spend amongst family and friends is not a bad deal.

Establish yourself amongst people you can relate to and people you can enjoy. Your practice and your interpersonal life will reap the benefit. Intercity or rural–what’s best for your family? Let the location of your competition inform your decision. Other issues are whether or not your spouse needs to find work, and the quality of the school system in the area.

Choose the Ideal Practice for You

Lay out a working business plan. What size of dental practice do you anticipate? And do be careful to leave room for growth. Will you be establishing a specialized or generalized dental practice. Can you establish relationships with other practices in the community that can give you referrals? Does working a full five-day schedule with a large list of clients appeal to you? Or do you want a smaller practice, with a slower pace, that will allow you to work fewer hours? Naturally, these decisions will affect your finances and may dictate your level of day-to-day stress too.

Get the Proposed Business Appraised

Have the business appraised with the help of a certified public accountant or valuation specialist. And opt for a professional that has experience with dentistry practices. This way you can establish a frame of reference for what local dentists practices, similar to your own are worth.

Round-up the Troops

Trying to save money by being completely self-sufficient is a poor decision when you plan on purchasing a dental practice. In the long-run, investing in advisors will save you a lot of trouble. Here are a few people you’ll need:

  • A CPA or accountant with a successful track record of advising dentistry practices and other small businesses on maximizing deductions and remaining tax compliant. You want an accountant who can help you set up tax strategies. You will need a certified public accountant to advise you on how to structure your dental practice (S corporation, C corporation, limited liability company (LLC), professional limited liability company (PLLC), sole proprietor).
  • A Bookkeeper who has familiarity in a bookkeeping software system such as Quickbooks. A certified Quickbooks Advisor is a level of distinction in which a bookkeeper certified by the makers of Quickbooks as skilled with the accounting platform.
  • A legal professional to review documents and legally protect your interests.
  • A consultant also will most probably prove invaluable in the long run, helping you avoid pitfalls.
  • From the beginning, you should establish a relationship with a bank. Getting prequalified will help you gain a handle on how to put in a good offer and how much you can afford.
  • An insurance rep will assess the value of your business and evaluate risk to see just how much coverage you will need.
  • It is wise to seek advice from a mentor or business confidant of some kind, perhaps a veteran dentist who once went through the same process you’re going through now.
  • A marketing expert-preferably someone with knowledge of internet marketing.

When starting a dentistry practice, go into it with a team that can make sure you get it right.

Seattle CPAsAbout Seattle CPAs
Seattle CPA+John Huddleston has written extensively on tax related subjects of interest to small business owners. Since 2002, he has been the owner of his own small business, Huddleston Tax CPAs. He is a graduate of Washington State University and the University of Washington School of Law.

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  • Huddleston Tax CPAs / Huddleston Tax CPAs – Bellevue CPAs
    Certified Public Accountants Focused on Small Business
    40 Lake Bellevue Suite 100 / Bellevue, WA 98005
    (425) 273-6512

    Huddleston Tax CPAs & accountants provide tax preparation, tax planning, business coaching,
    QuickBooks consulting, bookkeeping, payroll, offer in compromise debt relief, and business valuation services for small business.

    We serve: Tukwila, SeaTac, Renton. We have a few meeting locations. Call to meet John C. Huddleston, J.D., LL.M., CPA, Lance Hulbert, CPA, Grace Lee-Choi, CPA, Jennifer Zhou, CPA, or Jessica Chisholm, CPA. Member WSCPA.