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Q&A: The best time to build

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How can we determine whether to build a new practice or renovate our current facility?

Q: How can we determine whether to build a new practice or renovate our current facility?

A: There's a simple guideline that will help you make this decision: your space needs. Veterinary Economics Editorial Advisory Board Member Dan Chapel, AIA, president of Chapel Associates Architects in Little Rock, Ark., says he usually gets calls from practitioners who've run out of exam rooms. "If you have two exam rooms and you hire 10 doctors, you're wasting your money on a cosmetic renovation because they don't have the space to work," he says.

Another reason to build new is to add more hospitalization space and more runs. "Veterinarians can't perform surgeries without space for patients to recover," Chapel says. "This means they need to add on or move out."

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