28 October 2022 — articles
Are you considering establishing your own private practice? There are a number of general and professional factors to cover to ensure you get it right. Julian Muldoon, Director and Founding Partner of 1Group Property Advisory provides us with some key considerations to think about when it comes to this big decision.
There’s an incredibly important aspect of starting a private practice which is often not given the time and energy commensurate with its importance. We are talking about finding the right location AND securing the right property for your private practice.
Unfortunately, many doctors get this part wrong. And that’s not surprising, as it’s complex and not something to learn ‘on the fly’. Each parameter counts and every decision is final.
Why is location strategy important?
Choosing the right location is such a vital decision and a critical step in launching (or relocating) your practice. Getting it right can mean huge upside for you and your business. We’re talking about:
• Successful launch of the practice – being profitable quicker
• Security of tenure and market share
• Attracting the right doctors and other team members,
• Wealth creation for you
But on the other side of the coin, overlooking something in your strategy can lead to you wasting your time, energy and regretting the decision for years to come. We have found that a lot of doctors can get caught up in what seems convenient or right, rather than aligning their location strategy to what’s optimal for the target market or their business model. So, here we will provide you with a few key things to look out for when developing your location strategy so you can avoid some common pitfalls.
No matter the property, there are usually some common aspects to consider. Now this is not an exhaustive list and there is more to it, but a few things to keep in mind include:
Zoning and planning overlays
• The site must be zoned appropriately and it’s important to know whether the size and scale of the project would be supported by council.
• Is there adequate parking spaces for patients and staff?
• You want a site that is going to be easy to find, park at and enter.
• Will patients have a good experience locating your practice and navigating the building?
• Is the site accessible and convenient for the doctor/s?
• Is it compliant?
• How well does the building convert to healthcare use?
• What are the expected project costs? Are you over capitalising?
Now, depending on your profession, there are likely some specific things to consider, to give yourself the best chance at success.
Potential practice location – what should I consider?
• Other medical practices
• Other health services
• Aged care services
• Community facilities
• Transport infrastructure
• Pathology and diagnostic services
Consider the above list. Depending on your field, some of the suggestions there may be vital, or they may be irrelevant. Either way, it goes to show the sort of things you should be thinking about and the vast number of moving parts and integration points.
Other professional considerations might also include:
Target Market / Demographics
• Who is your core client?
• Where do they live, where do they frequent? What else do they need that you can leverage off?
• Your location would likely be different if your target market is the older population versus if it were young families.
• Looking at demographics can reveal incredibly important information about your market and what they value.
• What sort of income and work statistics are prevalent in the area? This is particularly important depending if you bulk bill or have patients that primarily use private health and pay per visit.
• What competition is nearby?
• What other complimentary medical services/businesses are nearby?
• Is there enough target market to share between your competitors and your new practice in your ‘catchment area’?
• With dental, veterinary and primary health businesses, it’s best to try and ‘own’ a catchment area.
• Where are the service gaps?
• Does the area have sufficient patient numbers to share around or very high population growth to support the new services.
As you can see, it’s quite involved.
There’s so much to think about and little margin for error, which is where engaging partners like the Bongiorno Group can play a big part in formulating a solid and successful plan.
To discuss your next commercial property decision in conjunction with your future financial plan contact the Bongiorno Group.
By: Julian Muldoon, Director, 1Group Property Advisory
For more information, or to book a complimentary meeting, please phone 03 9863 3111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
As this general advice has been prepared without taking account of your objectives, financial situation or needs, you should consider the appropriateness of this advice before acting on it. If this general advice relates to acquiring a financial product, you should obtain a Product Disclosure Statement before deciding to acquire the product.
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