Steps to Take
Practice Evaluation – Financial Assistance – Negotiations – Closing Preparation
Steps to Buying a Veterinary Practice
Buying a practice may be the largest, most complex, yet most rewarding financial transaction of your life.
“Excellent experience overall – very helpful with expertise in obtaining lenders, legal advice and many other aspects. I would recommend to others strongly.”
~ Johan Nieuwoudt, DVM
What are the steps of the buying process?
Simmons Inc. will lead you through the entire buying process—answering your questions, providing practice valuations, interpreting financial information, handling negotiations and contracts, and introducing you to veterinary-friendly lenders.
We guide you through these steps when considering a practice listed with us (some steps vary if we are representing you in your purchase of a practice not listed with us):
1. Identify a Property
You can review properties listed on our site and note the listing numbers of practices you’d like to consider. Then electronically submit the Confidentiality Agreement to the appropriate regional office. We can also send you this agreement by mail or fax.
2. Receive and Review the Practice Profile
Study each aspect about the practices that interest you, from location to financial performance, and determine whether a specific practice will meet your needs.
3. Contact a Lender
Financing the purchase of a veterinary practice has never been easier than it is today. Often veterinarians can even buy a practice with no money down.
We introduce you to lenders familiar with the veterinary profession. Besides qualifying your credit, the loan application process lets you get additional services from the lender, who can provide an independent opinion of the practice’s price, calculate cash flow and determine if the practice price is workable for you, and conclude whether you’ll be able to satisfy the debt and expenses and still take home a satisfactory, comfortable paycheck. When using a lender recommended by Simmons, you may even be able to apply for the loan with no upfront costs.
4. Schedule an On-Site Visit
Simmons will coordinate a personal tour and meeting with the current owner. We prefer to have the owner show you the practice, since they are in the best position to answer your detailed questions, tell you about their clientele and community, and outline the current practice philosophy.
5. Obtain Financial Records
We will send you tax returns and financial records from the practice, and help you understand every aspect of how your personal net cash flow is determined. We also welcome any input from your accountant.
6. Make Offer
Simmons can provide sample contracts and forms for your attorney to review and customize. We can also recommend attorneys with experience in veterinary practice acquisitions.
7. Agree to Terms
Once you and the seller agree on the practice price and terms, you’ll sign a legally binding contract.
8. Accept Financing
After you’re approved for a loan, the lender will send you a commitment letter that outlines the loan’s interest rate, length, and number and amount of payments. Upon your acceptance of the commitment letter, the lender will process your loan.
9. Prepare for Closing
The most challenging part of any sale is usually the point of contract, getting financing together and orchestrating all closing details among all parties (buyer, seller, professional advisers for both parties, and the lender). Unpredictable, unique challenges surface with almost every transaction.
Simmons provides guidance to help make sure no detail is overlooked as you prepare for closing and make your transition into practice ownership.
10. Closing and Transition
Now that you have the keys in hand, Simmons will help with suggestions and checklists to aid in a smooth transition.
If you are ready to take your first steps towards veterinary practice ownership, contact your regional Simmons consultant.
“I want to thank you and your associates for some of the most professional, prompt, and courteous service. After dealing with a few other brokerage firms, I was impressed by the presentation package you sent me. The time and effort you put into generating such a comprehensive, organized, and well-presented information packet was very much appreciated.”
~ David D’Souza, DVM
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