Current Trends-Choosing the Right Office Location for your Dental Office in the US in 2017

The office market in the United States continues to show strength in 2017, as leasing activity has surged with tenants now finding more options among second-generation and new blocks of space. The best medical office space in MD, Seattle-Bellevue, and Dallas are among the highest rated medical spaces.

The leasing volume in third quarter has reached 67.2 m.s.f, the highest in past two years. Leases larger than 220,000 square feet drove much activity and totaled more than 11.8 m.s.f, representing 18.4 percent of all deals done in 2017

Even with surging talent shortages in some markets, tenants continue to expand. Seattle-Bellevue and Dallas led the way, claiming 37.8 percent of all US growth year-to-date.

Despite vigorous leasing activity, vacancy is also rising because new deliveries now outpace absorption. Development is at its cyclical high at 104.2 m.s.f, but is slowly tapering off as the rate of completions now surpass that of groundbreakings. Vacancy is expected to rise further over next few quarters consecutively as 76.2 m.s.f of newer product will deliver to the US market through 2018, of which just 47.5 percent is prerelesed.

How to Determine if a Location is a Promising One

You should consider four important factors when selecting Dental Office Space: competition, density, demographics, and real-estate data.

A site that perfectly aligns with your preferences with these four factors and your practice’s short-and long-term goals will be the right site for you. (Few examples of preferences include: kind of care you want to provide and your ideal patient population)


You should use demographic date to choose areas with families who fit the profile of your ideal patients.

Data for the following will help clear your vision on who reside in an area and will definitely help you narrow your search fields:

· Ethnicity

· Households with private insurance

· Average household size

· Median age

· Native language

· Median household income

· Owner-or renter-occupied households

Because most individuals prefer to visit their neighborhood providers, it’s best to identify households with private insurance within your chosen practice area.


You should use density data to learn more about the intensity of land use in an area (ie. housing units per acre or people per square mile).

You can get comprehensive look at the density of the area you’re considering, by considering trade area configurations in the range of drive time or miles. For instance, it could be a drive time of 10-12 minutes or a three-to-five mile radius.

Evaluate the density of the area by considering the following factors:

· Total population

· Population density (number of persons per square mile)

· Population growth rate

· Number and type of housing units

· Forecasted population growth rate

· Number and type of jobs

According the report by US Census Bureau, Texas boasts of five of the 11 fastest growing cities in the country: New Braunfels, Georgetown, Pearland, Frisco, and Pflugerville. Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, , San Antonio and Austin were among the highest cities in the US for population gain. Growth visible in well developed areas helps new practices in acquiring more patients.


According to ADA (American Dental Association), the best competition ratio in the US is one dentist for every 2000 patients.

But its also important to look much beyond the raw numbers. You should also consider the competition from existing practices and whether you’re geared to meet your patient’s needs.

Do you want to treat a completely different population base? Many areas that have seen rapid re-gentrification or rapid growth may have existing practices that may not be serving or adapting to the influx of many new patients. For instance, a neighborhood that has many Medicare recipients could be attracting and re-gentrifying mostly privately-insured residents.

Do you want to use equipment that are not in services? Older practices may not get necessary investments necessary to serve the changing populations.

Are you planning to use services not readily available?

Similar to the above, many old practices may not offer latest dental procedures or some advances in dental care.

So there could be some opportunity to serve a community, that on paper, may look oversaturated.

Real Estate Data

Once the density, demographic and competition data have directed you to some markets, use real estate data to narrow your office options within those specific areas.

An optimal location has most of these qualities:

· Is located between daily-needs stores and homes

· Is located in a commanding position that impossible for a competitor to overshadow

· Has large, bright signage with good exposure to traffic

Women are primary decision makers for dental-care decisions and decision makers for health for their families. And convenience is one criteria for selecting health care providers. That’s the reason big dental practices choose retail shopping centers, instead of settling for medical office building.

A space close to complimentary businesses or daily-needs store (such as grocery store) will also increase awareness of a practice (potentially reduce the need for marketing) and will attract more shoppers.


Development activity in the US would continue at a moderate phase with demand and supply balancing out evenly over the long term.

Suburban office submarkets (with urban characteristics) are best placed to capture most of the occupier demand, and will provide many opportunities to them to secure space at much lower rents and for all those who want to buy at lower prices in promising areas that are poised for future growth.

These “urban-suburban” submarkets unique and characterized by robust live-work-play dynamics, including much higher densities of housing, office and retail space, as well as easy transportation access and other amenities. Some examples of well-established urban-suburban markets that offer most of these attributes include Santa Monica in Los Angels, and Palo Alto in the San Francisco Bay Area and Jersey Waterfront.

Asking rents and occupancy rates in emerging suburban and urban submarkets are at par with much broader and promising suburban markets in which they’re located, while established submarkets are poised to outperform. Rents in more than 60 percent of the well established submarkets also exceed their downtown counterparts.

Net construction and absorption activities have been concentrated mostly in urban-suburban submarkets as compared to their actual share of suburban office inventory.

Getting the Best Deal with a Good Real Estate Agent

Surround yourself with the best ever support system of seasoned professionals who understand dentistry. Your real estate broker, lender, architect, attorney, insurance broker architect, insurance broker, equipment rep, construction crew and marketing team all should specializing in helping dentists.

Challenge them by asking why throughout the process. Be choosy and hire only those who’re experienced and also care about putting you and your dental practice first.

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