Negotiate Your Medical Office Lease with These Tips

Running a medical office is much more difficult than other industries as you are responsible for both the medical and business side of things. This can create extra pressure and often make leasing the right medical office more complex than any other type of business. One of the best ways you can protect your business and its future growth is by negotiating and solidifying a leasing agreement that is right for you and your business.

 

Medical office leases need provisions that are unlike other businesses. Issues like patient safety and compliance with things like the Americans with Disabilities Act are necessary for medical offices. Below you will find some tips on negotiating your medical office lease.

 

  1. Use Provisions: Paying close attention to the use provisions is necessary because medical offices are much different than regular corporate offices or businesses. Your medical office may require the use of X-rays, CT scans, and other machines that could have negative health impacts due to the radiation emitted. Be sure to inform your landlord of all of the machines you will have and their respective uses. This also needs to be included in your lease agreement. This can help with avoiding any future liability later on if everything is in writing.
  2. Know the Terms:It’s important to read the entire contract. If there is anything that is unclear, have an attorney review it and provide you with more specific information. Leases can be long and include a lot of legal jargon that may be confusing. Some of the most important terms in regard to payment include the common area charges, rental increase amounts, utilities, property insurance, and taxes. You will not only pay for your office, but you will likely be charged for any common areas, including entryways, hallways, etc. This can add to your monthly rent which may come as a surprise if you were not prepared for it. It’s also helpful to know how the rent will increase in the coming years. Most business leases will run for five years with rental increases each year. These are negotiable so be sure and ask for a reduction before signing the lease.
  3. Consider Business Growth: Talk with your landlord about the ability to have the option to rent additional space at the same rate. Having the option to grow your business without having to worry about moving or paying higher rent for the same area can help reduce your costs and help with business growth.
  4. Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): Medical offices may have more clients that have disabilities or may need accommodations when entering and exiting the building. Be sure that the building is compliant with the ADA before you sign the lease and ensure that it is a part of your lease to continue the compliance. While it is legally required to comply with the ADA, there are those who disregard the law.
  5. Exclusivity Provisions: An exclusivity provision is a must in your medical office lease. This provision means that the landlord will promise you that they will not lease any other space in the development to someone who would be in direct competition with you. If you have a specialization, be sure to have this provision clear and present from the outset to ensure you are the only medical provider within the specific development. This can save you a lot of time and money in the long run and support business growth.

If you are looking for a commercial medical space in the southern California area, check out Boulevard Medical Properties. Boulevard Medical Properties has properties for lease in Northridge, Brentwood, Culver City, and Downtown Los Angeles. They are focused on finding their clients the best property for their business and they take the stress out of the whole process. Choosing to find a commercial property for your medical practice can be difficult but Boulevard Medical Properties can help elevate your business to the next level.

Five Easy Steps to Securing Patient Retention at Your Practice

Did you know that a 2% increase in patient retention is equivalent to cutting costs by 10%? The reason behind this statistic is pretty simple: seeking out new patients is expensive. In fact, it costs between 6 and 7 times more to secure a new patient than it does to maintain an existing one. As a result, patient retention should be one of your practice’s top priorities. If it isn’t, or your practice is struggling to retain patients, then here are the top five tips to address the problem immediately.

  1. Don’t Run from Conflict

Nobody likes dealing with an unhappy patient. However, patient complaints are one of your most valuable resources. As Sharon Mason Parker of Practice Builders points out, a patient with a complaint is someone who is willing to stay as long as their needs are addressed. If they weren’t willing to remain a patient, then they would simply leave, no comment needed. Patients who complain are telling you, right to your face, exactly what you can fix to keep patient retention up. That kind of honesty is relatively rare, so face it head on and use it to improve your patient’s experience at your practice.

 

  1. Remember your Patients are also Customers

The word “customer” can feel abrasive to some medical professionals, as if recognizing that their practice relies on profitability takes away from the humanitarian role of a healer. However, dividing those realities is simply impractical. Your ability to continue serving your community is completely dependent on the profitability of your practice, so you have to start treating your patients as customers.

 

Niki Kaylor, Director of Client Services at Healthcare Success, emphasizes how shifting your perspective to treating patients as customers with choices changes the entire dynamic at your medical practice. When you start considering patient comfort as well as care, you can address issues that were detracting from your practice’s success. Friendly desk staff, an inviting waiting room, and small, creature comforts such as water or coffee can make all the difference in how your patients perceive their visit.

 

If your current practice feels dingy or worn down, consider a renovation or talk to the experts of Boulevard Medical Properties about other available locations.

 

  1. Maintain Patient Relationships Outside of Appointments

Many healthcare providers make the mistake of limiting their interaction with patients to when they are physically present at their practice. This is a sure-fire way to make your patients feel that they are inconsequential to you. For your patients, their healthcare is a personal endeavor, and they expect you to treat it that way.

 

To ensure your patients feel like you care for them as people, Solution Reach suggests reaching out beyond the appointment. This can include appointment reminders the day prior, a hand-written birthday card every year, and just taking some time to get to know them. If you want to really commit, integrate yourself into the community by taking time to talk to people at the grocery store and donating to local festivities. In the end, all patients want a friendly, neighborhood doc.

 

  1. Tackle Wait Times

Besides a lack-luster experience with the doctor and staff, extended wait times are one of the top reasons that patients leave a practice. To avoid this problem, there are three things you can do.

  • Use an automatic appointment reminder system to increase your chances of scheduled appointments showing up on time.
  • Perform an audit by taking a proxy patient through all of your normal procedures. It will be time consuming initially, but it will help you to identify problems in your workflow, allowing you to streamline the process and your wait times.
  • Track average waiting time and keep it updated on your website and answering machine. This will allow walk-in patients to accurately predict how long they can expect to wait, reducing patient frustration.

 

  1. Take Surveys

According to Solution Reach, roughly 67% of people complete at least half of the surveys offered to them. As with complaints, surveys provide vital information regarding your practice and patient satisfaction. Look at surveys as a way of further auditing your practice and implement changes that reflect patient needs.

Patients are People

In essence, patient retention revolves entirely around your patients feeling that you recognize them as individuals rather than just a name at the top of a chart. If you take the steps to personally engage with your patients in a meaningful way both inside and outside of your practice, you will see an increase in retention.