How To Make A Good Dental Clinic With Minimum Investment – Dental Practice Management

Make the Best Dental Clinic with minimum investment! This article will tell you all the details on how to set up your own professional setup.

Dental Practice Management: How To Make A Good Dental Clinic With Minimum Investment? This post will tell you 7 Best Ways to do so.

How To Make A Good Dental Clinic With Minimum Investment

Dental Practice Management

This article is for all those young dentists planning to open their dental clinic/set up. You will come across many articles on the internet and also here at that will talk to you about the dos and don’t s while planning for a dental clinic.

However, for the 1st time ever, this article will show you a detailed analysis of clinic preparation & expenditure to smallest details. This material may not be of much importance to the already established practitioners, but for young dentists who are starting off, it can be a great set of information.

Please note – We are not saying this is the only combination to make your clinic. Also, some price estimations might vary from depending on locations. We welcome suggestions from the readers for more ideas.

What is that one single point, which worries young dentists when they start their professional career?

It is the worry of arranging the finance and how to make the best possible set up with minimum investment.

When you know how to make a professional clinic


minimum amount + best possible infrastructure

Then you can start a dental practice even with a modest amount available with you. 

It is similar to the theme of survivor series – when you can survive in the harshest conditions, then you can survive and thrive when the situations are favorable.

Every young dentist has the following questions in mind before starting a dental clinic

These issues are as follows

  • What is a correct & proper dental clinic?
  • What is the minimum investment required to set this up?
  • Can I get a bank loan to finance my requirements?
  • What will be the timeframe required?
  • What kind of a place will be suitable to open the clinic?
  • How to go about the interior?
  • Where can I source all equipment & tools from?
  • Where can I get good staff?
  • How do I get patients coming in?
  • When do I start maintaining accounts & record books?

Let’s start

See Next Slide

The best bank loans to start a dental clinic

(How to arrange the cash for your dental clinic)

No Cash To Start With?

(How to arrange money for your clinic)

Dental Practice Management

Just like any other business venture, to start a dental practice, you need financial investments. So the next question arises how to arrange that money?

  • If you are from an influential family or a family with a background in dentistry, then you will get the initial investment from within the family. Many dentists join the family dental setup and start their dental career.
  • However, what if, you do not have the luxury of such a financial backup. Then how do you raise money for your dental practice?

Suppose you have no cash with you. I mean no capital to start your dental practice.

Don’t think and expect your parents will give you the money.

Also, assume you do not have a place of your own. Also, no proper financial assistance from family and relatives.

As mentioned earlier, if you have these help, the job gets more comfortable. However, I want you to think and plan for the most rigorous way to make a clinic. That will make you more resourceful.

Once you have the plan of action to tackle the toughest scenario, then any other additional help will propel you to more success.

So the biggest question is 

How can you arrange the Money?

Yes, you guessed it right – Bank Loan.

However, which type bank loan to take?

From which bank should I take the loan?

How much loan should I take?

Will I be able to pay back the loan?

What are the various parameters to consider while taking a bank loan?


Your mind will ask you so many questions.

A bank loan is the only way you can raise funds necessary for your clinic. Being a dentist is similar to being an entrepreneur who has to borrow money from the market for their ventures.

Bank Loans: If you are planning to take a bank loan to start your dental practice, then you have a difficult choice to make. You have to consider the banks that provide you a credit at a lower interest. However, the interest rate is not the only factor to consider. What are the points to consider when taking a bank loan?

Dental Practice Management

Interest Rate: The most important point to check first. Your goal should be to get a loan from the best bank you can manage at a lower rate. So locking in a competitive fixed rate for the next seven to 15 years is your best option.

Loan Term: While taking a loan you should consider the most extended loan term available (around 10 to 15 years). Breaking the credit for longer years will lower the payments. If your dental practice keeps pace and shows growth, then you have the option to prepay the entire loan in short segments.

Pre-Payment Option: Pre-payment options vary from lender to lender. Loan repayment terms are less important in the early years as you open and build your new practice, but pre-paying your loan may become an option after your dental practice is no longer considered a start-up. In fact is now successful for some years and is looked upon by lenders as an established practice. However, this will vary from bank to bank.

As it is norm almost everywhere in the world, you might require a guarantor for availing loan from a bank. For that, you will need to take help of your family, who can be the guarantor or provide a mortgage against the loan.

Every country has its financial loan system regulations. So, where ever you are located, please do a proper research of the banks available on your location and the loan plans they provide. Choose the loan from the bank that you feel is the most suitable one for you (based on the points discussed earlier)

So now you are ready with the credit. The next step is to start building up your dental practice.

If you want to know more about the finances associated with running a dental clinic, then the suggested articles below will help you.

See Next Slide: Loan Taken!

Now How To Utilize that Loan for the Clinic?

How To Plan and Spend the Loan Amount for Starting Dental Clinic?

Planning & making a list of the expenditures is an arduous task. However, don’t worry we are here to help you. – One of the biggest online dental e-market stores in India has elaborated a nice list to explain the young dentists all the basic requirements and expenditures on setting up the dental clinic.

The first step is to visualize and get even the minor details on paper. You need to ask yourself many questions and ensure that you have satisfactorily answered all of them. If possible, meet a few practicing dentists from the area where you want to start the clinic and get their opinion.

The planning process will involve working on the following activities:

    • Finding the right place: A minimum requirement of 200 – 225 sq ft for a single chair practice (in a city like Mumbai even 150 sq ft should be OK). Get a property broker to help you find the right place.
    • Getting proposals from suppliers for equipment:
        1. Dental Chair Choice of the chair depends mainly on the budget. A wide range of chairs is available in the market. Best place is a conference trade exhibition as one can compare the price, deal as well as check out the actual size. Essential to check the inlet-outlet points, spittoon size & position.Depending on the budget one can mix & match an average chair with good quality unit/trolley.

          In day to day practice smooth functioning of the air-rotor, air motor, etc. is far more important than the comfort of the chair. An electrical chair is a better option with the facility to have additional points, attachments in future. Doctor stool’s comfort & height is another important point. Some seats cannot be raised higher & could cause a problem due to the awkward arm/elbow position especially since we nowadays tend to work for a longer period at a time.

      1. Compressor
        1. 2 HP Compressor is advisable if the suction is not motorized (though motorized suction is a better option in the long run)
        2. Care must be taken to avoid/reduce the noise made by the compressor & the position planned along with the chair.
        3. Plug point to be next to the compressor but the switch should be on the chair side panel.
        4. Compressor tubes to be underground.
      2. Ultra Sonic Scalier
      3. X-Ray machine/ RVG
      4. Curing Light
      5. Sterilization
        1. Autoclave
        2. Ultra Sound Cleaner
        3. Glass bead sterilizer – for undo files, burs, etc.
        4. UV chamber
    • Getting budget and time estimates from interior designers: One should not compromise on the quality & number of electrical points, cables, etc. Visualize your practice 3-5 yrs down the road & plan.The interior cost could be anywhere between 1000 Rs/sq ft to 3000 Rs/sq ft or more. If one is likely to have two chairs shortly, better to have plumbing & electrical arrangements made right at the beginning.
  • Other activities of the Planning Process would include:
    1. Investigating regarding landlines & broadband in your area for telephone & internet access.
    2. Project feasibility study involving sitting with an accountant and calculating the Cash Flow, Return on Investment, Months required for break-even, etc.
    3. If financing from bank take your project report and meet at least ten banks so that you can choose the bank that gives you the best rate of interest. Consult your accountant before you finalize with the bank.
    4. Spreading the word around talk about your new venture wherever you go and meet people in your social network. While the interior work is being done, you can have a hoarding informing passers-by about your clinic.

Now that the planning process is over and you are entirely aware of how the clinic is going to look like when it shapes up, it is time to commit and turn your dream into a reality.

Now how to set the dental clinic?

OK ! Money arranged & Planning done! What’s Next?

See Next Slide


Decide the place and complete all formalities to take possession of the premises. It is better to take the services of a competent property lawyer and pay him fees so that you are shielded from unscrupulous elements trying to make some quick money from you.

Once you have possession of the premises, inspect it correctly and if you are going to engage an interior designer then get him/her to inspect the premises.

    • Interior Work While your architect plans a good design for your clinic – the most important things should be taken care of like the position of each equipment for ease of use.
    • Dental Chair
          1. PositionEnough space should be left around the chair for movement of the dentist as well as the dental assistant. Ideal to have a working platform behind the headrest as it allows for easy access to the instrument trays, as well as space for other equipment, regularly used like the Curing Light, Scaler, Apex Locator, Air motor, etc. When the platform is behind, chair position can be determined with the cut-out of the chair in the most comfortable (for the dentist) backrest position/ most reclining position. Better to finalize the chair before starting interior work as it allows optimum chair positioning. It will allow for the plumbing, the electrical input/output as well as connection to the compressor to be underground avoiding a whole lot of wires hanging around the chair.
        1. Plumbing
          1. Drainage line has to be underground & planned well with proper slope, ease of cleaning, etc. as clogging is one of the most common problems.
          2. In the case of an attached toilet, if possible have two separate basins: 1 in the operatory, 1 inside/outside the bathroom as it allows for free wash areas: for the dentist & instruments, etc. If possible have separate drainage pipes as well.
        2. Electricals Try & avoid a clutter of wires around the chair. Have at least 2 points more than the required no. next to the chair. Have at least 2 5/15 points next to the chair as some of the equipment may need 15 amp points. Compressor plug will be next to the compressor, but the switch should be on the chairside panel.Extra points at the consultation table & reception area are a must.


    • Compressor: Refer planning section above.
    • Ultra Sonic Scaler: There are three basic types – magnetostrictive, piezo-electric and Odontoson™. Most commonly used is piezo-electric scaler.The scaling tip vibrates in the ultrasonic range of 20-45 kHz (i.e., 20,000 to 45,000 times per second), with an optimum frequency between 18 kHz and 32 kHz.
    • X-Ray machine/ RVG: Variety of dental X-Ray machines are available. Price ranges from Rs. 40000 to 80000 /-.
    • Curing Light
    • Sterilization / Infection Control: Various viruses and bacteria colonize or infect the oral cavity and respiratory tract. These organisms can be transmitted in dental settings most often through direct contact with blood, oral fluids or other patient materials and indirect contact with contaminated objects (e.g., instruments, equipment, or environmental surfaces).Infection Control in the dental practice focuses on the use of sterilization procedures that will be able to eliminate cross-infection from a dental professional to a patient, from a patient to the dental professional and between two patients.The use of barriers such as gloves, masks, instrument trays, tray covers, covers of the working surfaces and light handles is expected. There are specific disposable instruments used in the dental practice like gloves, masks syringes. that control cross-infection efficiently. Those which are meant for repeated use are cleaned through a series of steps such as chemical cleaning, ultrasound cleaning, heat sterilization, using various equipment and applicable cycles followed by proper handling after sterilization.

      Some of the most popular equipment is listed below:

      1. Autoclave – Programmed autoclave machines are better than conventional steel drum type as they have a shorter cycle, need less space & more convenient to use. No doubt they are costlier but are more reliable.
      2. Dry Heat Sterilizers.
      3. Ultra Sound Cleaners are used to remove debris from instruments before putting them through Autoclave or Dry Heat Sterilizers.
      4. Glass Bead Sterilizer – for endo files, burs, etc.
      5. UV chamber
      6. Chemical sterilization.
  • Tools & Instruments
    1. Dental Instruments (download list)
      • 15-20 sets of mirror, tweezers, probes.
      • 2-3 sets of a straight elevator, moon’s probe: best to buy at conferences as one gets a wider choice.
    2. Dental Material (download list)
  • Installation & commissioning is carried out by the respective companies providing the equipment.Estimated date of delivery of the Dental Chair & X-ray machine has to be coordinated with the completion of interior work.

See Next Slide 

Do You Need To Hire More People?

(Remember you will need to pay salaries)

Do You Need To Hire More People?

Ideally, you should have a helper & receptionist. However, at the beginning of the practice when the funds are tight it is not easy to do so. You are already spending monthly on room rent and bills. So, to save the additional money, you have to do the receptionist work.

It is not as tough as it seems. Rather than any receptionist being the first person to see a patient/client, you become the first person.

One thing many dentists do is to find an entirely new person (with no link to dentistry). He might be from a village or related to you. Teach him the basic crafts of running a clinic and simple works like arranging the instruments, mixing alginate, and others.

In a few months, he can be very efficient & helpful in managing the practice.

(Please note this approach might be against regulation in Western or European countries). However, in many South Asian nations including India and China, it is a regular practice.

Don’t get inferiority complex seeing the big dental clinics with a receptionist, few technicians, and all other modern features.

Spread your legs till where your blanket ends.

When you run a modest clinic, the risks are also low. So you are going to pull a profit from a small investment. Moreover, once you start having a regular gain, then you can begin to expanding you clinics gradually. Patience is the name of the game.

See Next Slide: To Succeed in Clinical Practice

Patience is the name of the game


(It is a long waiting game. The one who waits for the correct time reaps the crop)

You finally completed building your clinic with great care and considerable but educated investments. You hope that soon you will be in a position to recover the money. However, it is not that easy.

Setting up a clinic by investing and recovering money from the investment are two different things completely.


For example, if you have taken place for your clinic on rental then it is not that easy to recover the amount. Sometimes you will just be breaking even at the end of the month.

My seniors have told me that a new dentist needs to sit in the market for at least five years to be a known in the community. Then only you can hope for a regular income via profit.

It is an unending cycle, and every new dental professional has to go through it.

The Waiting Game

See Next Slide 

The Recap of All Necessary Steps

So, by now you are ready with all that’s necessary to start and run a dental clinic.

Let’s recap a little

It is just the beginning of the journey. Now your clinic is ready, and you are prepared to enter the clinical sector. Be courageous.

Once you start the clinic, the monthly recurring expenditures are always tough to maintain.

If you have kept at least one staff then by the month end, you need to give that person his /her salary too.

However, don’t worry. Every business goes through the establishment charges. Try not to get too tense for that.

In a couple of months, you will get enough patients so that you can meet your monthly expenditures plus a little profit. That is enough for now.

Please do keep in mind that the practice will start to show a good profit only after a waiting period of 3 to 4 years. So until that time, you will need to show patience. In fact, it is the time to keep yourself more updated with latest advances that will make your practice more comfortable and up to date.

Moreover, the day will come when you will get that sweet taste of success. Success regarding not only making a good regular profit financially from your dental practice but the realization that you planned and executed everything on your own.

There have been few recent cases of dentists committing suicide due to financial pressure and losses in the clinic. You must realize that the economic times are tough. Investing a considerable amount in a clinical setup (if you do not have the financial backup) and then being under a constant pressure is not wise. Take small steps and take it easy.

That is the time-tested rule.


We have presented you the toughest scenario to make a clinic – on your own with no help from anyone.

Now that you know it – any additional help is welcome. 

Family always comes to your support. Rather than taking a loan from a bank, your parents or close relative will lend you the money in affection. 

You can return that money little by little without any pressure. 

Rather than taking place for rent you might have your place. 

For each, there will be some help along the way and you are expected it to make the best use of it. So, all the best for your clinic and we sincerely hope that you all do well.

We would like to mention some references and useful links that helped us to get the information for this article &

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