We’ve all heard this bedtime story. The one about the dentist who after years of dental school and associating, decided to start their own practice.
Eager to get their practice underway, they go through the necessary steps to select a location, secure financing, and happily sign off on a ten year dental office lease provided by their landlord. But, they miss the critical and most important stage that ensures a healthy and successful dental business — reviewing the details of the dental office lease.
The fairytale starts to go south when our doctor realizes that the office lease they were so eager to sign initially is now impeding the growth and security of their business. They find themselves buried in clauses and contractual obligations that hinder their ability to practice alternative forms of dentistry, bring in associates, expand the practice, or eventually sell it.
Having incurred significant financial loss due to unreasonable rent escalations, a forced practice relocation (at the doctor’s expense), and a decline in business, our dentist is forced try and sell the practice and return to associating.
The moral of the story? Starting a practice requires planning, long-term thinking, and a thorough understanding and review of the dental office lease.
The Storyboard: Outlining the Plot
Before starting a dental practice, it’s important to understand your current situation and what your career goals are as a business owner. A young dentist fresh out of school will have different needs and goals than an established, end-of-career dentist. Identifying your needs and career goals will clarify what your dental office lease should do for you.
Create a plan that will clearly define your budget, timeline and long-term business and professional goals. The office lease should support your objectives, not hinder your […]