Starting a veterinary practice is a very attractive career option for many animal lovers, especially those that have experience both personally and with their education. While there’s nothing wrong with wanting to start a veterinary practice, you want to make sure that you’ve thought through every possible step when it comes to starting up a practice from scratch.
Have you considered where you’ll start? Are you going to use veterinarian equipment financing or get funding in other ways? How many people do you plan to hire? Do you have a business plan established yet?
There are many questions you have to consider if you want to start from scratch, so let’s look into a few of the key points you’ll want to address and research as you begin.
Do You Have the Necessary Characteristics to Open a Veterinary Practice?
Starting a business, especially a veterinary business, requires a certain set of characteristics. It’s not as simple as checking off boxes on a list. You need the mental fortitude to be able to make it through the tough times of a fresh business and you need the funding, such as veterinarian equipment financing, to help you start strong and stay afloat.
Are you willing to go in against all odds as you borrow, build, spend, and borrow even more before you make a single dollar? For some businesses, you may not see a profit for many months as you continue to get established.
Will you be able to make it through the early months when you can’t seem to find a single client, even though the rest of your business is “ready”? Will you be able to maintain your composure even as you experience the slow days and empty waiting rooms? You’ll likely be looking at long hours, tremendous amounts of paperwork and other business related hassles before it seems “worth it” financially. Does veterinarian equipment financing scare you, or do you have the means to get by financially for a while without utilizing loans or financing? Veterinarian equipment financing can be hugely beneficial in terms of upfront costs, and it can pay off in the short- and long-term as you will have lower monthly expenses while you’re working on increasing your customer base.
You’ll need to be able to do all of this and still come off as a “strong leader” within your business who has a solid vision and an unwavering belief in the direction of the business. Only then will you be able to move onto the next steps of starting up a new veterinary practice.
Creating Your Vision and Business Plan
Before you look into financing options, like veterinarian equipment financing, you’ll want to map out your vision for your new veterinary practice. Where will it be at? What will it look like? What hours will you be open? What services will you provide?
These will need to be considered, among other characteristics, which will then go into a fully fleshed out business plan. This business plan, once created and refined, is what you’ll use for yourself, your employees, and potential investors who you want to get involved in your business. Your business plan should include financial information, such as your plan to acquire veterinarian equipment financing and lease a space, as well as payroll and other monthly expenses.
It can be worth researching other successful veterinary practices, either in or out of your area to get ideas of how to structure your business.
How Are You Going to Finance Your Business?
This is one of the most critical aspects of starting up any veterinary business. Are you going to get one massive loan for all of your business expenses? Are you going to try and diversify your spending more efficiently through veterinarian equipment financing, capital expense loans, investments, and other financing options?
There are many ways you can get funding for your business. If you can find financing options that are tailored for specific equipment or purposes within your business, then you may end up with better rates than just getting a loan for a substantially large amount of cash to purchase everything you need.
Consider veterinarian equipment financing for example. With equipment financing, you can sometimes go straight to an equipment manufacturer and get incredible financing rates, often very low or with 0% interest at all. Other financing firms can also provide veterinarian equipment financing that is designed specifically for the type of equipment you’re using in your business.
Veterinarian equipment financing and similar types of financing is a great way to specialize your funding for better rates than cash loans because it's secured by the equipment.
For other business expenses that won’t be covered under veterinarian equipment financing, then you can look at more general financing options like a working capital loan for a veterinarian practice. Having some “float cash” from a loan will allow you to spend your financing on aspects of your business that may not have special financing options available for it.
Building Your Team
Once you’ve begun to secure your avenues for financing (e.g., your veterinarian equipment financing), and begun to build your office (or found a suitable location in the city), and taken care of any legal matters pertaining to your new veterinary practice, then it becomes time to build your team.
The team of employees that you take into your office not only need to be friendly, but they will need to be able to stand with you in difficult times of your business. Especially as a newer veterinary practice, you’ll want employees who won’t flake at the first sign of hardship.
Your “team” can also consist of more than just your employees. As the leader of your veterinary, it won’t hurt to have other “team members” on hand who specialize in certain aspects of business that aren’t needed on a daily or weekly basis. For example, have you considered who is going to help you with your legal matters and finances? Do you have someone you can rely on for making structural repairs to your office? Someone to help you find the best veterinary equipment to use your veterinarian equipment financing on, whether at the start or when you want to upgrade equipment?
Whether you have everything figured out for your business or not, it’s worth taking the time to review all the necessary steps of creating your veterinary business startup. Whether you’re seeking veterinarian equipment financing or want to make sure that you have all the financials sorted out for your new business, feel free to contact us and we’ll help you make sure all of your bases are covered for starting your new veterinary practice.