I have been a blogging slacker. It isn’t because there is nothing going on in my life. In fact there has been so much flying through my brain that every time I sit down to write it down I get all muddled up. Then another day goes by and it just gets worse. So in the immortal words of Inigo Montoya, “Let me explain… No, there is too much…. Let me sum up.”

Last week I managed to totally depress myself by thinking about monetary stuff. That kind of thing always depresses me. So I went to work on Friday and Saturday in a bit of a funk. The place I worked on Friday was awful and I kept getting injured so I was even less happy. Saturday’s place wasn’t bad but it was far away. I started trying to decide what exactly it was that I wanted to do with my life now. Friday night I came to the conclusion that the life I wanted was exactly the life I was anticipating a few months ago – adopting kids and only working a bit. Well that wasn’t exactly helpful and managed to put me in an even deeper funk. So on Saturday I worked on trying to figure out something more helpful.

Here’s what I came up with. To try to make a living doing what I do is going to require working lots. I don’t mind working lots but the traveling gets old. Also, I still want to adopt and I really don’t want to have to wait until I find a suitable guy who wants to support me and a kid. I won’t be able to travel as a single parent. So, I need a steady job. Therefore, I should buy a practice.

Now step back and remember that prior to this weekend I was very concerned about how on earth I was going to find someone to give me a mortgage. Now I’m blithely saying, “I need to buy a practice.” Totally insane idea.

But, if you want to make money as a vet then you really need to own a practice. I need money. I need a steady job. I don’t want to work for someone else.

I started looking at practices for sale around here. I found a few options. One is a practice in a small town just north of here. It is fairly cheap (this is all relative for someone with absolutely no money) but it doesn’t make much money. The ad says that they don’t work very often either. I would need to find out if that’s because of laziness or because there is no business. There’s a big difference. It is small animal only now but could add some limited horse work. Downsides – small town with limited growth. Do I want to be stuck there for the next several years at least? Staff who are used to how things have been done before and may resent changes.

Another option is a corporate franchise practice. There are several available. Good stuff – they are less upfront cost. New staff. All new equipment. Big visibility because it would be in a pet store. Larger towns. Bad stuff – lots of fees. You rent the space so you don’t build equity in the real estate. What do you really have when you want to sell the practice? Lots of rules.

There are some other practices listed for sale too in the area. I’d have to have a bit of a look around at them. That could be fun. Again, this may be all academic for some with no money to buy them but I think I’d like to pursue this.

8 Replies to “Let me sum up”

  1. Wishing you the best of luck in your efforts to create a financially & spacially stable life for yourself & for future children.

  2. My cousin was a vet in a small town. He essentially went in with no money straight out of vet school. The entire collateral was the business. You are more likely to find a bank to do that in a small town than you are in a big city, because they want to attract business to the town. My thought is that the small town is better long term than the franchise.

    What you need to do is talk to the current vet. Find out why they don’t work much. If it’s lack of business, you may be able to deal with that in just marketing yourself. If it’s laziness, same story as before. The only real problem is if there just isn’t any business there. Again, though, you’ll need to look at what kind of marketing they have done. Also look at if there are any other vets in town. Not all small towns can support two vets.

    If it looks good, then write up a business plan and hit the banks and the SBA for a loan to buy the business. The worst that can happen is that they say no.

  3. It would probably cost as much to start a new practice as to buy an existing one. With an existing practice you have name recognition and clients who already come there out of habit so you can make a living instead of trying to attract new clients from scratch.

  4. not being an entrepreneur or someone who even has the deisre to own a business let me ask a silly question…. could you start and build a practice doing what you like rather then buy one?

  5. It seems as if you’re at the beginning of a journey of independence and self-reliance. Scary as it sounds, it’s the best thing for you!

What Do You Think?