By Richard E. Rogovin, D.C.
Refurnishing or starting
There are a lot of ways to save money when buying equipment and furniture in your office.
Lets start with furniture.
There is a tremendous markup for new office furniture. Just look at some of the office furniture catalogs and you will see what I mean or perhaps you have already spent an arm and a leg on furnishing your office.
The first thing you want to do to save money is look in the classified
ads in the Sunday paper under furniture or office furniture or office
supplies. A lot of offices are going out of business or moving to an office
with a different decor or just selling some unneeded furniture.
When I started looking I found a mortgage company that was going
out of business. I bought 10 waiting room chairs, 2 secretary desks
with chairs and 3 room dividers all for $400. Now they were asking for $600 but
they wanted to get rid of the stuff so I asked them if they would take $400
and of course they agreed to it. They can always say no but you won't
know if you don't ask. The furniture was in mint condition too.
Moving for less
Now if you are
planning to move to a nicer office or a better location or just starting out, do you really want to pay $25,000 or more to build it out? Why not be like the hermit crab. Move to an office that is ready and waiting for you?
In other words drive around the area you want to move to and
see if there are
any for rent signs for office space. Or look in the classifieds
My first office was in a space that had been used by an aluminum
company. Six months before I moved in they put in new carpeting
wallpaper. They quickly went out of business as some of those
businesses are prone to do and I moved in.
I had little to do except build a shelf at the receptionist's
desk. Since I
am not too handy with wood I hired a carpenter who did it for
$100 and it
Recently I did it again.
A colleague had moved up the road in to a fine
location. He spent $30,000 for the build out several years ago.
had my eye on his place and when he recently built his own office
I moved in
to the really nice place that he had spent all the money on.
We painted the
walls and touched it up a little and that was all it needed.
Saving money on equipment
You can also save
a ton of money buying treatment tables and equipment.
A lot of local societies or supply companies have newsletters
I bought several used tables and therapy machines, which worked
for many years.
If you think your tables are getting ratty then have them recovered
cost of around $150 to $250. You can have the firmness of the
to your liking and it looks like new.
You can go to Chiroweb online where you will find plenty of equipment
sale and many willing buyers for your own stuff. I had several
there for a table I had for sale and indeed I sold it to as DC
who saw it
Recently I went to the warehouse of a local chiropractic supplier.
I had my eye on a used Spinalight table with a $900 price tag.
corner there was a nice used Leander table which was beat up
turned out to work fine. When I was told the price was $400 I
asked them if
they would take $300 plus I would let them recover it for another
I now have a new looking Leander table that works just fine for
$475 and yes
I asked for and got free delivery.
Saving money and effective
Would you also
like to save a lot of money in advertising and get a lot of
patients to boot?
Yellow pages can work if done right!
People plain and simple look for location in the Yellow pages
there are already a lot of DCs advertising. The best scenario
is if you are
in a suburb of a larger city or in a well-known area of that
What worked for me and others I have helped is to have a column
ad not a
picture ad. In a black square you have the area of town in large
yellow letters. People see your area stand out amongst the ads
don't have to have a large expensive display ad.
I was getting 3 or 4 new patients a week that way until after
I didn't need it anymore.
Save on the copier
Now for the copy
If you have ever had a long-term contract with a copy machine
maintenance on their machine then you know how much it can cost
Why pay for your own paper then have to pay again based on usage?
And read your contracts. Not all parts are covered so you may
have to pay
for them anyway.
Go to Sam's Club or some other discount store and buy a nice
copier and pay
for the supplies, as you need them. It will be a lot cheaper
in the long run.
I bought a nice Xerox machine with a 3-year warranty and I buy
cartridges as needed. I have saved a lot of money over the old
way of paying
a company based on usage.
Always buy your copy paper and computer paper in bulk. You save
a lot of
money that way.
If you must have that copy machine the salesman showed you then
look up the
other copier companies in the phone book and call them and ask
models. There is a good chance they may let you try out one of
the models in
your office. Of course you will want to call the other salesman
and try out
If you try out all the copy machines companies for a few weeks
each you may
be able to go for a few months with free copying. This has been
Saving on great business
Would you like
to have a magnetic business card?
Don't spend a lot of money with a printing company to do it.
Go to Staples or another office supply store that has magnets
that have a
cover that peels off and is sticky on top. All you do is place
card on it and you have a great way for patients to see your
name on their
refrigerator every day.
Get online for free
A lot of people
have saved money for online services by using one of the free
software discs they send out. If you are one of the few who have
received one then just get a PC magazine with one enclosed in
You get upwards of 100 free hours to try out the software. I
know of some
people who after the 100 hours are over have done it again using
a new screen
One acquaintance has never paid for online expenses.
Once you have access to the Internet there a number of free email
You can send mailouts to your online patients and keep in touch
colleagues around the world.
Bartering is the way
One of the best
ways to save money is to barter. You have a gold mine for
this with your patient base. I have bartered with patients for
my trees, cleaning and resurfacing my roof, fixing my car, detailing
cleaning my carpets in the office and at home, painting the office,
machines, repairing the walls, putting up new wall and many more.
also barter for specific items. I once bartered for 2 phones.
The way to do
this is to make your patients aware that this is available
I had a note we gave some patients that said what kinds of things
and have them on the lookout for someone who needed care and
was willing to
trade. As I write this I am bartering for golf lessons.
When you barter you must set the price right from the start and
putting it in writing.
A good way to save
money and organize your patient education materials is to
buy colored folders at one of the discount office supply stores.
about a quarter a piece and have a pocket inside where you can
put all the
educational pamphlets, exercise sheets or whatever else you need
to give to
all your new patients.
It looks professional and saves whole lot money over getting
Save on copying expenses
Whenever you have a large
copy job to do of over 100 you will save a lot of
money by going to Staples or an office supply store that does
cost savings is significant over buying your own paper and using
For stationery we have a printer make it but for patient notes
we make copies
which saves a bundle. We buy 500 copies at a time. The insurance
doesn't care if the stationary you print notes on is blue 20-pound
just black and white copy paper.
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