Dental News

Commercial Real Estate: Overcoming Your Fear of Ownership

By |January 1st, 2013|

The severe drop in property values that accompanied the Great Recession has caused many small business owners to be skeptical of commercial real estate investment. They have lost faith in the adage that property values tend to increase over the long haul, shying away from real estate purchases in favor of lease arrangements that insulate them from the unpredictability of the market. Yet there has never been a better time to purchase the business property on which your dental practice resides. The significant opportunities available to small business owners through investment in commercial real estate warrants a second look at the pros and cons of leasing versus purchasing your office space.


For new dental practitioners who are uncertain of future space needs and want to ensure maximum cash flow as they grow their business, leasing may be a wise option. In general, it’s far less costly up front to lease commercial space compared to a real estate […]

Live Oak Bank makes a contribution towards the Dental Trade Alliance Foundation

By |November 27th, 2012|

November 27, 2012 – Wilmington, NC – In an effort to continue to express its commitment to the dental community, Live Oak Bank has donated to the Dental Trade Alliance Foundation (DTAF). The mission of the DTAF is to improve access to and the productivity of the oral healthcare system. This can be accomplished by identifying, nurturing and leveraging specific projects that show promise in improving the healthcare system. The DTAF grants funding for innovative projects to improve access to oral healthcare, affords dental students who illustrate a strong commitment to community service scholarship opportunities, and provides for the recently launched Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives national public awareness children’s oral health Ad Council campaign.

“Thanks to the generosity of donors like Live Oak Bank, the Dental Trade Alliance Foundation is able to fund innovative, replicable, sustainable projects designed to create access to oral health care for those with the greatest need,” commented Laura Fleming Doyle, Executive Director of the […]

Practice Financing: Can You Get a Loan?

By |October 29th, 2012|

You walk into the building and it instantly feels like the perfect place to create your new practice. You want it. You deserve it. But will the bank lend you the money to buy it? Certainly, it seems that all the conditions are right. After all, interest rates remain at an all-time low. Commercial property is readily available and many sellers are eager to negotiate. Given the current market, who wouldn’t want to purchase or build their practice as soon as possible? In fact, dental lenders tell us that 60% of dentists in the first five years of practice seek to establish their own offices, up 10 percentage points from just a couple of years ago.

Jason Tyson is vice president of Bank of America Practice Solutions in Southern California. He and other lenders note that the timing may be perfect for some new dentists to pursue the dream of owning or building their own practice, but it’s a critical career […]

Dental Customer Spotlight: Dr. Ed and Jean – Missouri

By |October 23rd, 2012|

Dental Customer Spotlight

Dr. Ed and Jean share their story about working with Live Oak Bank.

Why Now is a Great Time to Build Your Practice

By |September 17th, 2012|


If you’ve been thinking about building your own dental practice, now’s a great time to jump in. Market conditions continue to support favorable mortgage rates and construction costs, while the U.S. government has reached out to small businesses with even greater tax deductions for equipment purchases in 2011. In addition, owning your commercial property still appears to be a reliable and potentially profitable investment for your future.

Favorable commercial property values
Commercial property values are at their lowest level in decades, providing purchasers an opportunity to obtain far more for their investment than they could have just a few years ago. Plus, property values are likely to increase over time as the economy recovers, making commercial real estate a relatively secure long-term investment. Commercial property can also become a potentially valuable source of retirement revenue – either through outright sale of your practice and the underlying property, or through sale of your practice […]

Top-Producing Practices Know These Communication Skills

By |September 17th, 2012|

Just My Opinion: Top-Producing Practices Know These Communication Skills

I have talked to hundreds of dentists during the over 30 years I have been in dentistry, asking their one wish for their practices. Over and over, almost all wish for a dental team characterized by at least 3 of these words:
*enthusiastic     *happy     *look forward to coming to work     *reliable
*satisfied     * self-motivated     *willing to grow the practice
I tell them that there are several factors that need implementation before achieving a team that meets many of the above-mentioned qualifications, based on my experience, and one of the most important factors is effective communication between the dentist and his team in 6 specific areas:

1. Communicating expectations to the team
2. Valuing contributions
3. Handling concerns properly, in a timely manner
4. Rewarding initiative
5. Fostering personal strengths of individual team members
6. Handling inevitable mistakes properly

Dentists must recognize their “Communicator” role as one part mentor, motivator, and monitor for […]

The Starting Point for Practice Reform

By |September 17th, 2012|

Every dental practice has a Wish List, but none has a Fairy Godmother. Most wish for phenomenal practice growth, some want more personal fulfillment for their hours of labor, and a few just wish team members would stop complaining. For wishes to come true, the magic wand must be loaded with effective communication skills.

What is effective communication? Most don’t define it completely. It is the exchange of ideas, verbal or written, in which the Sender gives information to the Receiver, where it is processed. The Receiver should understand the information so well that it could be not only repeated but explained as well. They then send a response back to the Sender, and that person acknowledges hearing it. It forms a cycle. If the cycle is clear and precise, there is less chance for undesirable results.

A dental office communicates with many different audiences daily, whether it is with the patients, insurance companies or fellow team members. Their method of communication […]

Advantages of Owning Your Business Property

By |September 17th, 2012|

Every business owner with a physical office at some point confronts the question of whether to purchase or lease their office space. There are many factors to consider in making this important decision. For new dental practitioners who are uncertain of future space needs and want to ensure maximum cash flow as they grow their business, leasing may be a wise option. But for new or seasoned practice owners with a strong financial profile, a clear picture of future growth, and the ability to take advantage of the tax benefits of ownership, the commercial real estate market has never been more attractive.

Historically Low Prices for CRE
The 2008 recession and subsequent slump in the residential housing market extended to the commercial real estate (CRE) market as well, sending property values significantly lower and producing more available properties than has been seen in years. Today commercial properties for dental practices are far less expensive than they were three years ago.

Meanwhile, the rental […]

Key Steps to Managing Your Financial Profile

By |September 17th, 2012|

To establish and grow your practice to its full potential typically requires periodic financing. To ensure you can qualify for a loan and get the best rates available, it’s critical to have a strong financial profile – and the single most important thing you can do to improve your financial profile is manage your credit score. Here’s how:

1. Understand Your Credit Score
Your FICO credit score distills all the information in your credit report, producing a single number that lenders, employers, landlords and others use to determine your credit worthiness. Scores range from about 300 to 900, with the vast majority falling in the 600-700 range. A score below 620 indicates “high risk” and could make financing difficult to obtain, while a score of 750 or above may qualify for the best possible rates.

The key factors influencing how a credit score is determined are shown below in order of significance:

Past delinquency: The FICO formula assumes that people who have failed to […]

How to Write a Business Plan

By |September 17th, 2012|

If you’re considering a loan to start-up, build or expand your practice, you’ll need to present a thorough business plan as part of the application process. A business plan shows potential lenders you have a well thought-out strategy for building income and profit, giving them the ability to assess risk. The quality of your plan can affect the terms you receive from your bank. But more importantly, a good business plan functions as your roadmap to practice growth, detailing how you expect to succeed and how you will measure that success.

The following are the key elements of an effective business plan. For a more thorough description of how to develop a business plan, visit the U.S. Small Business Administration website at

Executive Summary
Perhaps the most important section for lending institutions, the goal of the Executive Summary is to convince the reader that you have a viable business proposition. Here you introduce your business strategy and provide a concise summary of […]

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