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Top 7 Reasons Why Clinic Owners Are Forced to Sell

Posted by Rick Lau on Jun 29, 2023 6:30:00 AM
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Top 7 Reasons Why Clinic Owners Are Forced to Sell

There are many reasons why a clinic owner might choose to sell their clinic, be it a massage clinic, physiotherapy clinic, dental clinic, or chiropractic clinic.

But it might surprise you to learn that retirement is not one of the top seven reasons. Retirement is, of course, the most desired reason to sell a clinic. It is the lofty goal of most owners, the great ambition to work hard for your career, build up the value of your clinic, sell it for a high value, and take that burst of money off into the sunset of your retirement years.

That’s what most clinic owners want. And a few do actually attain it.

But reality tells a different story...

Before we get to the reality though, understand that you can pursue the ideal goal of selling your clinic when you want to, not when you’re forced to. Here’s how to determine the current value of your clinic business, and here are 7 ways to increase its value so you can sell it for maximum dollar.

These and many other questions related to selling clinics that were discussed by industry experts and clinic owners in a virtual roundtable episode of New Patient Secrets, a totally free webinar series created specifically for clinic owners like you. 

Here are the top seven reasons clinic owners usually end up selling their businesses.

1. Personal Health Issues

It’s a disappointing reality that life doesn’t always go the way we hope.

You can do everything right with your clinic business and then end up with an unexpected health problem before you planned to sell your clinic. That health issue can end up forcing you to sell because you aren’t able to keep running the business.

So, you end up selling earlier, more hastily, and for less of a reward than you would have otherwise earned.

But, this is also a reason to consider your own personal health while running your business. Working 16-hour days without taking time for self-care and without delegating to reduce your workload isn’t a recipe for good long term health.

Consider your own personal health habits as not just something to make life more enjoyable, but also an investment in your business. Do everything within your power to not let your own health be the reason you end up having to sell your clinic.

If you're planning to buy or sell a clinic, give this quick video of Paul Moon a watch.

2. Divorce

Between health issues and divorce, about 60-70% of clinic owners sell for one of these two reasons, according to the expert panel in this episode of New Patient Secrets.

In both cases, life circumstances unrelated to your business end up making it too difficult to continue owning and operating the clinic business. Sometimes, the divorce may be so costly that you have to sell just to pay the bills.

Do whatever you can to work on your marriage and family relationships. Just like your health, you’ll be happier, and you won’t have to worry about a failed marriage forcing you to sell your clinic at the wrong time, before you have made it worth what it could have netted you in value.

3. Family Issues

family issues why medical Clinic Owners Are Forced to Sell

Many other family issues, some completely out of your control, can also force clinic owners to sell.

It could be having to care for an elderly relative. It could be adult children who get into problems and you have to help them. It could just be family dysfunction from a variety of places. Too much stress makes it untenable to continue focusing so much time and energy on your clinic.

4. Business Partner Fallout

If you have a business partner, do everything you can to preserve the health of that relationship. In terms of your clinic business, this isn’t much different from a marriage. If you and your partner diverge from each other and start having conflict you aren’t able to resolve, it’s almost a certainty the clinic business will have to be sold by one of you, if not both.

This is why great care and consideration needs to be taken when deciding to work with a business partner. A healthy and collaborative business partnership can yield extraordinary benefits, because not all the work depends on one person, right from the start. But if the relationship turns toxic for whatever reason, you won’t be able to keep running the clinic together for long.

Here are 5 issues to consider before starting a business partnership

5. Spousal Relocation

Sometimes, a clinic owner’s spouse has to relocate for their job, and for a variety of reasons, that may prompt the owner to sell their clinic.

The larger and more established your clinic, or network of clinics, the less likely this is to happen. But if you have just one clinic and it’s still relatively small, you may decide to just sell it and move on.

The good news here is, you did it once, so you can do it again. You can start up a new clinic wherever your spouse’s relocation has brought you. Take what you learned the first time around, and make it even better the second time. You’ll be able to come out of the gate stronger and more knowledgeable.

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6. Burnout

The fact is, owning a clinic is hard work.

When you just work as a physio, chiropractor, dentist, or massage therapist in someone else’s clinic, you get to show up to work, serve your patients, develop your skills, and go home. You don’t have to worry about marketing, or inventory, or accounting, or hiring, or any of the many other tasks required of clinic business owners.

Some people who thought they would want to own their own clinics, be their own boss, and not have to answer to anyone, discover how much harder that life is than they realized.

It takes a particular type of person, with particular drives and motivations, to succeed and be happy as a clinic owner, even through all the challenges and setbacks.

That may not be you, and that’s okay. You gave it a shot, and found out that clinic ownership is not for you. So in that case, you can sell, take the lessons learned, and go back to being a clinician for someone else, or move on to the next phase of life.

7. Received an Insulting Offer

medical Clinic Owners Are Forced to Sell because of Receiving an Insulting Offer

Clinic owners sometimes get pitched offers to sell their businesses even when they aren’t looking to sell.

In some cases, they receive offers that are downright insulting. This sometimes motivates them to double down on figuring out the true value of their clinic, increasing it, and then going after a buyer who will give them the price their clinic is truly worth.

Sometimes the insulting offer motivates the owner to go after a ‘real’ offer.

Start Increasing the Value of Your Clinic NOW

Is retirement the best reason and the best time to sell your clinic?

Well, not necessarily.

So much of this depends on you. What do you want? What are your long term goals and plans? Maybe you don’t want to own a clinic until you’re 65.

Besides retirement, another good time to sell is while you’re still growing. If you have a track record of strong and consistent growth over a few years, that will be attractive to buyers because it looks like a sure bet for recouping their investment.

  • So you might be just 45 years old, but what if you could sell your growing clinic or network of clinics for a huge payoff when you’re 48, and then do something else with your life after that?

Again, that’s not for everyone. But neither is retirement. The point is – there are many good reasons to sell a clinic besides the seven reasons discussed here.

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Do This Next: Find Out the Value of Your Clinic

Is now the best opportunity for you to sell your physiotherapy or chiropractic clinic? Should you wait five years? Or are you on the flip side and looking to expand by buying more clinics? 

If you want to sell a physiotherapy or chiropractic practice now or in the future, you will need to know how to determine an accurate valuation for your practice. If you’re looking to buy, you’ll need the same set of skills to assess how much the one you want to acquire is really worth.

To get a free customized valuation of your clinic, or to see other clinics for sale in your area, CLICK HERE.


1. What’s a good reason to sell a health, physical therapy, chiropractic or dental clinic?

One good reason is to sell is that you want to retire, and you are able to sell the clinic on your terms, with a big payout, and celebrate a successful career. Another good reason is that you want to pursue the next challenge in life and can sell your clinic now for a great price because it is growing and successful.

2. What are some bad reasons to sell a health clinic?

Some clinic owners get forced to sell their clinics before they really wanted to. Reasons include family problems, divorce, health problems, business partner fallout, spousal relocation, and good ol’ burnout.

3. I received an insulting offer for my clinic? Should I sell anyway?

This is actually not that uncommon. For many clinic owners, an insulting, unsolicited offer can serve as a motivator to increase your clinic’s value and prepare to sell it on your terms, in your timing, and at a price you think it should be worth.


Who is Rick Lau and CallHero?

Rick Lau, founder of callhero and clinic accelerator a community of clinics

Rick has built three 10 million dollar healthcare businesses over the past 15 years including a network of 127 clinics with over 1400 employees. He is one of the most sought-after mentors for clinic owners in Canada and USA and the founder of Clinic Accelerator where he helps owners double, triple, and even quadruple their profits by optimizing their clinic operations using his proven systems and leadership strategies. Plus, he has spent over millions in google and facebook ads during his career. He is also the founder of Callhero, an all-in-one communication platform to grow your clinic.

You can follow him on Instagram

Topics: Sell or Buy Clinic


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