MediEstates - Finance for the private dental practice sector
Finance for the private dental practice sector

Finance for the private sector


Looking to buy or sell a private practice? Lucy Keeble discusses the current appetite from banks for lending to private practices



Each bank has its own criteria for lending and its own preference as to the type of client or practice it wishes to fund


The desire from dentists to own their own private practice, and banks’ willingness to provide the necessary funding to do so, shows no sign of abating. Despite not having the security of a guaranteed income derived from an NHS contract, over the past few years we have seen strong growth in demand for private practices, as well as many more dentists being keen to start up squat practices in the private sector.

At Henry Schein Financial Services, we deal with banks on a daily basis and see first-hand their perspective of the current market.

Each bank has its own criteria for lending and its own preference as to the type of client or practice it wishes to fund. The majority are more than willing to lend to dentists, but their offerings and terms vary widely depending on requirements; for example, one institution may offer a lower interest rate but require more security than another. However, what all banks need to see is that the profitability of the business is enough to repay the loan at the requested level over the agreed loan period and the funding proposal is clearly presented to ensure a positive response.

Banks no longer have a ‘one-size-fits-all policy’ when it comes to lending. Today it’s on a case-by-case basis, following guidelines rather than a rigid policy, which is a huge positive for buyers and sellers alike. We are seeing the market opening up to provide dentists with options that were not there in the past. The need for a deposit is also becoming more flexible, with banks considering the equity in a property rather than asking for a set amount upfront. In some cases, we are seeing deposits as low as 5% and 100% lending, even in the case of first-time buyers.


The appetite of banks for lending remains strong and we are seeing plenty of positivity in the market


What are banks looking for?
While freehold properties are considered by banks to provide more security against a loan, most are also happy to lend against leasehold premises, as long as the lease in question is of reasonable length. The bank will require full details of the buyer, looking for a minimum of two years’ experience of managing or being an associate in a UK practice.

As well as historical accounts for the practice, usually for the past three years, the bank will also want to see a business summary on how it is performing and the buyer’s plan for the future growth and direction of the business. This is something with which many buyers require support and often turn to us for professional help and guidance to meet the lender’s requirements.

Ensuring the best deal
The scope for lending on a practice purchase has many considerations and variables, so to secure the best deal available, it is recommended to use a specialist dental adviser that can navigate the best loan terms rather than approaching a bank directly. Henry Schein Financial Services works directly with heads of healthcare at appropriate banks that specialise in financing dental practices. This is something not normally found in a local high street branch, which can only offer standard business rates for a commercial mortgage, with interest rates well above those we can negotiate. Our rates are specific to the dental sector and are as low as 1.9% above the UK base rate in some cases, with both fixed and variable rates available.

Despite the current economic uncertainty, the banks’ appetite for lending remains strong and we are seeing plenty of positivity in the market.

Every dental practice is different, so when it comes to the complexities of buying or selling a practice it makes sense to enlist the help of a team of dedicated dental practice brokers to negotiate the terms that best suit your specific needs and budget.

With the one-to-one support of a financial adviser who understands the intricacies of the current market, you can ensure the most appropriate loan terms for your prospective practice purchase.

Posted by: Lucy Keeble on

General Buyer Terms 

This agreement is in relation to MediEstates Limited whose registered office is at 1st Floor, Pacific House, Stanier Way, Wyvern Business Park, Derby, DE21 6BF acting for and on behalf of our clients ("the Vendors"); and yourself (Buyer's Name) in relation for an introduction to a prospective sale of a business as a going concern. By registering through this agreement I agree to all terms set out below:

  1. Definitions
    In this Agreement the following terms and phrases shall have the following meaning unless the context otherwise requires:

    Dental Practice business providing dental care. This business is under the MediEstates Ltd sale terms.
    Confidential Information
    Means the actual Vendors identity and all confidential information in respect of the Business, including, but not limited to, any ideas, business methods, prices, accounts, finance, marketing, research, development, manpower plans, processes, market opportunities, intentions, design rights, product information, customer lists or details, employees’ details, trade secrets, computer systems and software, and other matters connected with the products or services manufactured, marketed, provided or obtained by the Vendor, and information concerning the Vendor’s relationships with actual or potential clients or customers and the needs and requirements of such clients’ or customers’ operations.
  2. Obligation of Confidentiality
    The Prospective Purchaser agrees to treat as confidential, information supplied by or on behalf of the Vendor in connection with the sale of the Business.
  3. Exclusions
    The obligation of confidentiality set out in clause 2 does not apply to:
    1. any information received from a third party who was legally free at the time of disclosure to disclose it;
    2. any information which was already lawfully in the Prospective Purchaser’s possession prior to receiving it from MediEstates Ltd on behalf of the Vendor; and
    3. any information which is in its entirety already in the public domain.
  4. Duties of Prospective Purchaser
    1. The Prospective Purchaser shall take such a reasonable security measures to protect the Confidential Information and trade secrets.
    2. The Prospective Purchaser shall not, without the prior written consent of the Vendor, permit any of the Confidential Information:
      1. to be disclosed, other than in confidence to its legal or professional advisors;
      2. to be copied or reproduced;
      3. to be commercially exploited in any way;
      4. to be used for any purpose other than in connection with the prospective purchase of the Business;
      5. MediEstates is registered under the Data Protection Act 2018. Upon Signing this agreement you agree to follow the legal obligations of this act to protect the details of the information supplied to you, with it no to be passed outside of the control of you the prospective purchaser.
    3. The Prospective Purchaser agrees to keep a record of Confidential Information received.
    4. The Prospective Purchaser will return to MediEstates or the Vendor all documents containing Confidential Information and all copies of those documents on demand at any time which are in its possession or under its control, and for this purpose the term “documents” includes computer discs and all other materials capable of storing data and information. The Prospective Purchaser agrees that such documents remain the property of the MediEstates on behalf of the Vendor.
    5. The Prospective Purchaser must not jeopardise or re-direct the sale under any circumstances.
    6. The Prospective Purchaser must not contact the Local Area Team or CCG regarding any practice sale, by any means of media unless written permission is granted from the Vendor.
    7. To carry out own due diligence on practice purchases and accepts that any information MediEstates has supplied is information provided by the vendor and is not responsible for its accuracy or completeness.
  5. This Agreement
    The existence of this Agreement and its terms are confidential and neither MediEstates nor the Purchaser may disclose anything about this Agreement or its subject matter or implementation to any person other than in confidence to their legal or professional advisers.
  6. Duties of Prospective Purchaser
    When buying Dental practices, finance is normally needed. Our organisation operated over more than one of the MediHoldings brand, by completing this from you agree that the information can be shared to our other organisations to avoid the need to register independently and provide the best possible service.

    MediEstates will refer you to the specialist dental lending team and MediFinancial who will contact the necessary banks, whom have preferential healthcare lending rates in some cases, to ascertain which funding is available to you.
    By signing this agreement you do not have to use any of the banks MediFinancial contact, it is just another service which we provide.
  7. Deposit for Dental Practice
    If you are interested in putting forward a formal offer in for a practice, once the offer is accepted there will be a deposit required to secure the practice sale which is dependant of the practice size. This deposit is held in a client account and will be returned to the buyer on completion of the practice sale. You the buyer, will be required to sign a deposit schedule which will cover the buyer and the seller in the event that the practice sale does not proceed.
  8. Changes to this Agreement
    Any changes made to this agreement must be authorised and signed by one of MediEstates Ltd Directors.
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