Is it time to build your own dental office?
No doubt about it, making the commitment to expanding your dental practice is a big investment – in both time and money.
As with any big decision, you’ve got to ask yourself if the investment of a new dental office will pencil out.
You may be doing a lot of internal hemming and hawing as well. (That’s okay – it’s all part of the process!)
While you’re waging that internal debate, here are three questions to ask yourself about your practice that may help clarify your decision:
Am I making a great first impression?
Just like a fabulous smile goes a long way in making a positive first impression, a comfortable, modern reception area goes a long way in making a positive first impression for your practice.
While a fresh coat of paint and some new furniture can help that first impression with your patients, today’s customers are looking for other amenities, such as Wi-Fi and television to pass the time. Does your current reception area have the space and the connectivity to make these amenities available?
And speaking of connectivity, is your current office wired to for fast, efficient internet?
Do I have the services my patients – and prospective patients – want?
Dental technology is changing fast and allowing more procedures to be done in-house, often in a single appointment. Do you have room for a 3-D printer or CAD/CAM equipment? If you did, could you attract more patients?
Am I currently positioned for growth?
By one estimate, adding an additional operative suite to your practice will net
an extra $150,000 per year for your practice – and the outlay in construction and equipment is far less per operative than what you’ll net in revenue.
If your current space can’t accommodate another treatment room, this may be the best reason to consider new construction.
If the answer to these questions finds your current office coming up short, it’s time to start considering a new home for your practice.
A great place to start investigating the build out your new office is by talking to a general contractor. A contractor can help advise you regarding construction methods, timing and general costs. These preliminary talks aren’t about a formal cost estimate but rather to provide a starting point as you begin searching for a location (whether for new construction or tenant improvements to an existing space).
A good general contractor will point out possible pitfalls to watch out for and advise you on steps you don’t want to forget – from permitting to patient flow – as you move forward.
When you’re ready to sit down with a contractor, be prepared to answer a lot of questions for the contractor to home in on your goals. Come prepared with your own questions as well.
Want a place to start with those questions? Get our cheat sheet “6 questions to ask your contractor” designed specifically for dentists.
And good luck with your growing practice!