The more I read from you the more I like you.
My first practice was $30,000 (total purchase price) and it grossed a bit more than that in a year. I borrowed $70,000 more and spruced it up a bit, with results much like you described. A few years later (almost 20 years ago now) we sold the practice to Cycledoc who has further improved it an turned it into a thriving practice.
I think we were around 10 times the initial gross when we transitioned.Patients don’t have emotional attachments to old dental stuff. All in all, I think a dental office should be “slightly” better decorated than the average home in the area.
As I’ve said, I’ve been through a number of similar older practice buys. Two years ago a client bought a practice with the old brown 1970 wood paneling through-out the entire office, one of the first things he (and a friend) did was go in over a weekend and simply re-paint it a whitisheggshell type color to simply brighten the place up. He said his team arrived for work Monday morning (he wanted to surprise them) and commented how different, brighter and better the placed looked AS did just about every patient that came in over the next couple of weeks. Over the next 6 months he replaced some of the older chairs, equipment, desks, shelving, updated the wall coverings (pictures, etc.) and had numerous compliments.
It created excitement among his team to the point that they wanted to help and make suggestions. Needless to say he’s done VERY well with that practice, almost doubling the revenue from $530k to nearly over a million over the past 24-36 months.