Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Consultant

1. How many practice transitions and/or sales have you been involved with?
Over 1,500

2. How many years in the business?
Founded in 1988, we have 26 years in practice transitions.  Each individual broker/team member has additional experience and training in various aspects of business and finance consulting.

3. How many of your sales have ended up in litigation/arbitration or in professional divorce?
Three arbitration and  fourteen separations of associate buy-in type transactions with no arbitration or litigation.

4. How many purchasers have defaulted on their promissory notes to sellers and/or banks?
Five to the bank and three to the seller.

5. What is the charge for an appraisal?
We produce appraisals for a variety of circumstances.  A practice to be listed, marketed and sold to an outside buyer requires a greater degree of detail than a internal appraisal for the owner and/or partner to assess the growth or changing value of their practice.  Appraisal fees may vary if there are multiple offices or multiple dentists.  We also utilize different fees for the different markets in which we work, based on our knowledge and experience in those markets. Contact the broker for the state your practice is located in for more information. Typically, the appraisal fee is credited towards the total transition fee at closing.

6. What do you feel are your strong points in providing transition/brokerage services?
Integrity; competence with over 26 years of business and finance experience; follow up after the transaction; provide detailed “to-do lists” for buyer and seller; conduct staff meetings on how to best handle the transition; and have an attorney and accountant on retainer for updating and researching changes in legal and tax law.

7. Is your appraisal contingent on signing a listing agreement?
No.

8. How do you know you are accurate with your appraisal?
We are thorough in our analysis and use time tested appraisal formulas; we also track the results of previous transitions.

9. Do you feel there is a conflict between appraising a practice and then listing it for a percentage of the sales price?
There can be.  Some brokers will inflate the appraised value to persuade the seller to sign the listing agreement. A biased appraisal makes it much more difficult in convincing a purchaser that the sales price is fair and equitable.

10. What type of post-sale/post-transition follow-up do you do, both with the buyer and seller?
We follow up with both the buyer and the seller after Closing.  We also provide training for the buyer in marketing and leadership/teambuilding.

11. Is this your main occupation or do you have other activities to help subsidize your consulting business (i.e. sell insurance, securities, real estate, equipment/supplies, or practice dentistry or management)?
Each broker/team member is devoted full-time to facilitating successful transitions.

12. How will I know that these other activities do not conflict with the quality of service I’ll receive?
Our only activities are facilitating, consulting and coaching dental practices and dental transitions. Our compensation is derived solely from practice transition services.

13. How do I know I have the right candidate (seller/purchaser)? What systems do you have to help both parties better understand their compatibility concerning goals, needs and personalities?
Depending on the type of transition, we may have the doctors fill out a personal needs analysis and/or a personality profile. This tells us more about their goals and  their work style. We look to see if goals are complimentary with both parties. We encourage “pre-courtship” activities (i.e. checking references, out of the office activities, spouses meet together, etc.) This helps establish a better understanding of each party’s needs and goals. We look at how they follow through with their commitments through the consulting process.

14. Do you have “pre-qualifying” financial guidelines with regard to whether or not a potential buyer can secure funding?
Yes, we review their background, objectives, financial statements, income needs, and leadership style.

15. What do you include in your appraisal?
Our standard appraisal includes a detailed practice prospectus that covers how the practice operates, an appraisal report that analyzes financial information, proformas to analyze a potential buyer’s cash flow after the transition, demographic data on the area around the practice, and practice photos.

16. Does your appraisal cover enough information for one to complete a due diligence to the practice?
Yes, with the exception of a chart audit, which must be performed by the buyer in person before closing; the buyer should also review the seller’s tax returns.

17. What resources do you have to keep up on the latest changes in business and tax laws?
We have an attorney and accountant on retainer and also subscribe to publications on legal, tax and practice management issues.

18. How long does it take to transition/sell a practice?
This depends on various factors, like location, size of practice, terms, type of transition and market demand. In most cases, 3 to 6 months in desirable areas and up to 12 to 24 months in rural areas.

19. How are you compensated?
We utilize different fee structures for the different markets in which we work, based on our knowledge and experience in those markets.  Contact the broker for the state your practice is located in for more information.  In no case will our fee exceed 10% of the selling price of the practice.

20. What services do you offer for the fees charged?
Locate a buyer or seller; Locate financing; Determine the financial structure of the transaction; Draft contracts for attorney’s review; Oversee the closing; Conduct a staff meeting on how to have a smooth transition and on how to transition the patient base; Show ways to increase new patient flow; Instruct on how to conduct effective staff meetings; Provide practice management guidelines for a successful practice; Address any ongoing concerns during the first year of transition.

21.Please tell me how your form of compensation is best for me and the transition of the practice.
We add integrity, clarity and perspective to the process. A practice transition consultant directs a win-win transition and helps minimize the need to compromise the goals of both parties.  97% of past clients were satisfied with our services.

22. Do you have any literature that will help me better understand the transition process and how I can better prepare myself for it?
Yes, we have detailed information and checklists for sellers, for buyers, and for staff which address all the relevant issues of the transition process.  Please call or email us for more information..

23. How well does the buyer do after the transaction is completed?
We offer post-transition management and marketing services to the buyer for the first 12 months after the sale to help ensure the success of the transition.  By tracking the results of the sale, we find that more than 90% of our buyers either meet or exceed the previous year gross production in the first year.

24. Can you furnish a list of the five most recent sales and/or transitions of buyers and sellers?
Testimonials from past clients are used in a variety of our marketing materials and under “Success Stories” on our website.  We would be pleased to provide additional references upon request.

For more information regarding how we work and the services we provide, contact our regional offices:

CTC Associates offices:
(303) 795-8800
(801) 298-4242
(505) 577-6698
www.ctc-associates.com

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