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The key to getting the best deal for your dental practice? Preparation

Thinking about selling your dental business? Paul Graham, Head of Dental, shares some tips on how to prepare your business for sale, and why being prepared early on is key.

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Paul Graham

Paul Graham

Managing Director - Medical


If you’re considering selling your dental business somewhere down the line but feel that it’s too early to really begin the process, then think again. As with most things, planning is key, and the earlier you start to prepare your business for sale, the better the outcome.  

There may be things that you can do over the coming months/years so that, when you’re really ready to sell, you can maximise your practice’s potential and negotiate the best post-sale conditions, and that’s also where we, as brokers, can help.

There have been many occasions where the right advice to our client is not to sell straight away, but instead to work with us to identify practice improvements which will ultimately maximise future value for when it does come to selling. So, engaging in an early conversation and building a professional relationship with a sales broker who considers the bigger picture is vital.

Why prepare so early?

A benefit of this is that the broker can get to know your business, understand your objectives, guide you on areas within your business that need to be improved to enhance the demand and value, and share market intel on what buyers are looking for which will allow you to constantly adapt your practice. Doing this well ahead of any sale is highly recommended and will allow for a more informed outlook.

Here are some things a RICS regulated broker, such as Christie & Co, can do for you:

Financial Performance Review and Optimisation

Combination of Revenue and Cost optimisation to ensure the practice operates at optimal profitability and all potential upside is realised.

Cost Review and Benchmarking

Independent review of the cost base of the practice and benchmarking against national and local trends to identify cost improvements and efficiencies.

Revenue Optimisation

Analysing the patient profile, chair usage and contract performance to evaluate products and services which can be offered to increase the practice income.

Independent Operational and Strategic Review

A detailed review of the operations and strategy of the practice including analysing the current design and layout of the practice, alongside the marketing strategy and staffing profile to identify areas for improvement.

Ongoing Support and Advice

Ongoing financial and operational support through frequent monitoring and reviews of practice performance, to ensure the full upside potential.


Understanding the value of your property and making sure you have the right rent is critical to a successful sale. We have a team of Chartered Surveyors based across the UK, offering a range of valuation and property related services to the dental sector which include accredited ‘Red Book’ valuations for loan security purposes, valuations for partnership set up and incorporation, dispute resolution/expert witness assignments, rent reviews for landlord or tenant, and freehold ‘bricks and mortar’ valuations.

At Christie & Co, we analyse hundreds of dental practices, of all shapes and sizes, each year. Here are some common themes and pieces of advice from sector leaders who we’ve had the pleasure of working with over the years, who sit at the forefront of some of the UK’s best dental businesses and transactions:


First and foremost, investment in yourself is so important. You're always a clinician, so invest in yourself and do good dentistry.

Mentorship and Advisors

Find a mentor, someone who will help you along your journey, walk alongside you, show you the ropes so that you can achieve what they've achieved in half the time. Speak with a specialist dental solicitor, accountant and RICS regulated broker – they are dental sector specialists and have a wealth of knowledge. It is essential that you surround yourself with these professionals and tap into the right advice and support.


Aside from having the best clinical equipment to carry out dentistry, investment in practice IT is crucial. Data is power, and knowing how the practice runs will help maintain its cutting-edge capabilities.

Leadership teams

Practice owners incorrectly consume a multitude of responsibilities and get inevitably bogged down. However, the best dental businesses are surrounded by leaders. Empower your workforce for the most efficient operation.

Marketing function

This is pivotal in driving new patients and repeat business enquiries, all of which underpin the profile of the practice, financial forecast assumptions, and wider strategic decisions.

It’s also important to bear in mind that working with a specialist sales broker isn’t just about gaining access to potential buyers, although that is, of course, significant. Negotiating the post-completion terms in a dental sale is a highly sensitive and specialist area, and experience has taught us at Christie & Co that the devil is in the detail.

The stark truth is that sellers dealing directly with a buyer are highly likely to receive unfavourable and unrealistic conditions attached to a mediocre offer. It’s even worse for those who ‘sell their practice free of charge’, as the sales agent often takes a fee from. In such a fast-paced market, it’s more important than ever before to seek accurate advice.

If you’re considering selling your dental business, now or in the future, contact Paul Graham for a confidential chat about your options: / 07739 876 621

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