By Rod Johnston, MBA, CMA and Jim Vander Mey, CPA, ABI
You have had a great career and now you are thinking about selling and transitioning out of your veterinary practice. You would like to get the best value for your practice. Do you just walk away? Being prepared can not only help you get the best price, it will help ensure a smooth transition.
Here are a few things you can do to help prepare for your veterinary practice transition:
- Know your Financial Situation - Meet with your financial advisor, CPA, or whoever gives you financial advice to get a good picture of where you are with your savings and investments.
- Get a Practice Valuation - A practice valuation will help you see how much equity you have in your practice. Additionally, a CPA can help you figure out what the taxes and net proceeds from your sale will be.
- Update Technology - Buyer’s like to see new technology in a practice.
- Cosmetic Updates - Have you updated the interior with paint and carpet in the last 20 years? If not, it’s time. Buyers like a practice with a fresh feel to it. A 1970’s feel was good in the 1970’s.
- Review Accounts Receivable Aging - Collect any past due accounts, send to collections or write them off. Also, review credits to either pay back to the patient or send unclaimed property to the State.
- Review Staffing - Are you over or understaffed? Adjust accordingly.
- Clean Up your Financial Statements - Make sure the expenses you’re running through your veterinary practice are related to your practice, or at least identifiable as an adjustment.
- Consider Ramping Up Production - If you are not sure how then hire a veterinary consultant. Ramping up your practice when you’re 3 or more years out will pay dividends on the sales price.
- Review Your Fees - Do you have the lowest fees in the area? Consider a fee increase to catch up.
- Harvest your Equity - Maybe you are a few years away from retirement but tired of being an owner. You should consider selling now, take the equity out of your veterinary practice and work back as a veterinary associate.