Whether your business fails or succeeds is dependent on what services you provide your customers, making sensible business decisions, and keeping on point with a solid financial plan. Building and maintaining a strong client base is imperative to your success. With the right services, you not only keep the clients you already have, but increase them. If you are now looking at adding non-surgical services in your cosmetic practice, then it's time to purchase your first laser. Since this is a major investment, take the time to review different options to make the wisest selection for your business needs.
Determine what funds are available. You should never consider purchasing an asset like a laser without reviewing your business expenses. The fixed and variable expenses are simple enough to determine as they are regular expenses. What about the unexpected? If an emergency comes up such as a computer breaking or equipment failure, you need to be prepared with emergency funds. With that in mind, take a second gander at your books to see how much money you can comfortably spend.
Check out the competition before selecting a service. If all the other clinics in the area are already providing infrared laser hair removal, then choosing that same type of device won't help you stand out from your competition. Instead, look at offering a thermal hair removal laser or something altogether different. Know what service will be most beneficial to both your business and your clients, then choose accordingly.
Beyond that, check out what other clinics are choosing for laser devices. It doesn't hurt to ask what brand and model they are using and why they chose it. If they avoided certain brands, find out why. Learn what you can so you can avoid problem models.
Prices are drastically different between new and used models. A brand new machine straight from the factory will cost anywhere between $50,000 and $250,000 or more. That's a huge investment, especially for a new business.
On the other hand, buying a previously used laser will cost you far less. Search different sources to find the best price and you will pay only a fraction of the price of new. There are plenty of resalers available online so you can find a wide assortment of devices.
Financing is a possibility. You can certainly take out a loan to purchase a new, unused laser device, but is that the right choice for your business? If you have a well established business with plenty of clients, this can be a perfect solution to acquiring a new machine. However, if you are just starting your practice, getting bogged down in debt is not an ideal solution. It would be better to purchase a used laser within your budget instead.
Tax incentives may apply to laser purchases. The U.S. government gives special tax incentives on major laser equipment purchases. Unless you are well versed on tax incentives, make sure you consult with your tax advisor or accountant prior to purchasing a machine. If the incentive is large enough, it may well be worth purchasing a new laser instead of a used device.
Take into consideration if there is a warranty or not. New machines automatically come with some sort of warranty on major parts and repairs. They generally expire after one to two years and often offer limited extensions. That sounds highly desirable until you read the fine print. Most require that you send your machine back to the manufacturer for the repair, meaning your service will be unavailable for several weeks until the repair is made. The extended warranties may require expensive service contracts as well.
Regardless of whether your machine comes with a warranty, you need to look at local repair shops for maintenance. Don't purchase any model that cannot be serviced locally or you'll be looking at some major expenses (both in time and money) when your machine breaks down.