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Eight Steps to Start a Dental Practice

Dental exam chair with window and landscape artwork on the wall
Dental exam chair with window and landscape artwork on the wall

The journey of starting your own dental practice can be both thrilling and challenging. However, with careful planning and execution, you can turn your dream into reality. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the essential steps to start a dental practice.

Make a Business Plan

A well-structured business plan is the cornerstone of a successful dental practice. Begin by defining your vision for the practice, outlining your long-term goals, and determining your target patient demographics. Include a detailed budget that encompasses all startup costs, equipment, technology, and operating expenses. Develop a robust marketing strategy to reach your intended audience and establish standard operating procedures and systems to ensure smooth operations.

Get Prequalified by a Lender

Securing financing is crucial to turn your vision into reality. Approach dental-specialized lenders and present your business plan to get prequalified for a loan. A strong financial foundation will set the stage for a smooth transition into practice ownership.

Search for a Location

The next step in your practice startup journey is to find the right location. Enlist the help of a broker who specializes in dental real estate. Consider factors such as the local demographics, competition, accessibility, and visibility. A strategic location will help attract a steady stream of patients.

Negotiate a Lease or Purchase Contract

Once you’ve identified a suitable dental office, your broker will help negotiate a lease or purchase agreement with the property owner. Ensure the terms align with your business plan, and carefully review all lease clauses, including renewal options and exclusivity rights.

Build Out Your Space

Engage the services of a qualified project manager to oversee the buildout of your dental practice. Collaborate on space planning, obtaining necessary permits, selecting equipment, and receiving construction bids. An efficient buildout ensures that your practice is fully equipped and ready for operation.

Hire and Train Employees

As you near the completion of your buildout, begin the hiring process for your dental team. Look for skilled and compassionate individuals who align with your practice’s vision and values. Invest in thorough training to ensure that your team is well-prepared to provide top-notch patient care.

Move In

With your dental practice fully equipped and your team trained, it’s time to move into your new space. Conduct a final inspection to ensure everything is in place and ready for your patients.

Hold a Grand Opening

Celebrate the culmination of your hard work with a grand opening event. Invite community members, colleagues, and friends to experience your state-of-the-art facility and meet your team. Use this opportunity to create lasting connections and establish your practice as a valuable asset to the community.

Starting a dental practice requires careful planning, dedication, and perseverance. By following the eight steps in this guide, you lay a solid foundation for a successful practice that not only meets your goals but also enhances the well-being of your patients for years to come.

Contact Menlo Group if you are looking to start a dental practice. Our dental real estate team will help you secure your ideal location, and our project management team will help oversee your buildout.

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