How to Apply for the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) – REVISED!

Nate Williams COVID-19 Updates 50 Comments

As recommended in a previous communication, we recommend applying for the EIDL loan; the first $10,000.00 will be a “grant” (free money) from the government if used for the following:

  • Providing paid sick leave (not applicable if your office is closed)
  • Maintaining payroll (not applicable if office is closed)
  • Making rent or mortgage payments (yes, applicable if you pay rent or if you have a loan on your building, a practice purchase or equipment loan)
  • Repaying obligations that cannot be met due to revenue loss (other bills)

To clarify, we recommend borrowing $10,000.00 on this loan; this is free money. Any additional amount you borrow is a formal loan that you will have to pay back; we only recommend you borrow more money if you actually need it.Read More

Nate WilliamsHow to Apply for the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) – REVISED!

PFG’s Employment Guide During COVID-19 Crisis (Revised 4/1/2020)

Nate Williams COVID-19 Updates 3 Comments

New Guidance on Employees – updated March 27, 2020

We are not employment law or HR experts. We have never claimed to be. But if you wake up and see your neighbor’s house burning down, do you sit back and watch because you’re “not a fireman?” (maybe it depends on which neighbor ?)

This post is not intended to be a comprehensive FAQ on all employee-related issues. A few sources we have been turning to for clarifying advice, which we recommend to you, are:

Additionally, we have been reading the text of the actual bills that have been passed recently, searching for relevant guidance related to your practice.Read More

Nate WilliamsPFG’s Employment Guide During COVID-19 Crisis (Revised 4/1/2020)

Cash Emergency Plan 2.0

Nate Williams COVID-19 Updates, General 1 Comment

With each passing day we learn more info about this “New COVID-19 World Order” that we live in. Our hope is to be as helpful to you as we can during this time. Here are some additional thoughts to share that we hope will be helpful:

What should I do?

Financial principles don’t change; the application of those principles – the strategy you should employ – will depend upon your circumstances. Some of our clients continue to operate their practices and don’t plan – at least for now – to shut down. If you’re open for business as usual, keep going as long as you can. Even in these circumstances, we recommend caution against the day when you do get shut down.

But if your office is shut down, you’re in a completely different camp and you should employ an emergency cash strategy. The rest of this email is directed toward those whose offices are shut down, or who will eventually need to shut down.Read More

Nate WilliamsCash Emergency Plan 2.0

Coronavirus and Cash Preservation

Nate Williams COVID-19 Updates, General 1 Comment

Last week we sent out some guidance regarding your investments during a panic/crisis like the one we’re currently experiencing. During this crisis, many people will panic and sell at low values. During this crisis there will be very little real, long-term wealth lost; but there will be massive amounts of wealth transferred. This wealth will transfer from weak to strong hands and from scared to brave hands.

But this note is not about investments, it’s about surviving in your practice during a time where business may stop. We are getting a lot of questions about cash flow and what to do with employee pay. Let me try to address those generally. To get specific answers, please contact your PFG advisor directly.

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Nate WilliamsCoronavirus and Cash Preservation

PFG’s Investment Guide to the Coronavirus

Nate Williams COVID-19 Updates, General 2 Comments


Dimensional Fund Advisors (DFA), who manages most of our clients’ money (including our own), recently released this article relating to COVID-19. I recommend you read it: The Corona Virus and Market Declines

For years I have been advising clients to do the following with regard to their investments:

  1. Focus on investing as much as you can.
  2. Pray that the markets go down – another 2008 would be best.

When it comes to #2, I get weird looks and snickers implying that I’m joking. I’m not. Unless you’re going to market to sell, market declines are the best indicator of future returns, and they are your friend. This isn’t my opinion or some contrarian perspective. It’s math.

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Nate WilliamsPFG’s Investment Guide to the Coronavirus

Donald Trump Should Have Invested in Index Funds

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Since the inception of Practice Financial Group nine years ago, the overarching financial and personal philosophies for our dental and medical clients have not waivered:

  1. Become clinically exceptional at what you do. The more you love it, the better you’ll be.
  2. Learn to make money from your clinical skills with a servant’s mentality: having the focus of giving more value to your patients than you take from them.
  3. Do this in one location and become as profitable as you can.
  4. Maintain a balance of work and life; take care of yourself physically, emotionally, spiritually, etc.
  5. Employ the “one house, one spouse” rule, particularly the one spouse part. Divorce is the highest tax bracket. Nurture your marriage, make it great.
  6. With the help of a trusted advisor, develop a tax-efficient system to pay off debt and invest your money using low-cost, passive mutual funds.

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Nate WilliamsDonald Trump Should Have Invested in Index Funds

Want to Grow Your Practice Collections? Marketing May Not Be the Solution

Nate Williams Practice Management 1 Comment

As your financial advisors, our work begins after money transfers from your patient to your bank account. Collections are the lifeline of your business, and although we’re not technically responsible for how you collect money, as your financial partner we take great interest that you do collect money.

When our clients want to grow collections, a very common response is to throw more money at marketing, intending to bring more patients into the practice. Or worse, they may be tempted to bring on more insurance PPO contracts to attract new business. But oftentimes, these solutions don’t address the real issue.Read More

Nate WilliamsWant to Grow Your Practice Collections? Marketing May Not Be the Solution

Dental Practice Embezzlement

Ryan Millar Practice Management 2 Comments

Embezzlement is a real concern among dental practice owners, as it should be. The statistics and reports vary, but it’s safe to assume that if you don’t take precautions, then you have at least a 50/50 chance that an employee steals from you during your career. All cases of embezzlement are sad, but some are tragic, with the doctor losing hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Through our research and experience, we’ve learned that there are countless ways to embezzle from a dental practice. Because of this, we agree with dental fraud expert, David Harris from Prosperident, who contends that it is virtually impossible to guarantee against embezzlement in your practice. Instead, the goal is to reduce the risk of occurrence and to minimize the magnitude of loss.

In effort to simplify a complex topic, I have organized this issue into three lists: 1) some basic principles and practices you should follow; 2) a list of what PFG does to guard against embezzlement; and 3) a checklist of things you should be doing to address this issue. This third list – the things you should do – isn’t exhaustive. We may decide in a future blog post to give you the several page list of what you could be doing. For now, we’ll start with the most important activities first.

Basic Embezzlement Principles:

  1. Segregation of Duties.
    If you have one person who does everything relating to money (paying bills, keeping the books, collecting money) that’s a problem. Ideally, the people who have access to cash will not have access to the accounting records, for example.
  2. Hire Good People.
    Typically, someone who embezzles was dishonest before you hired them. Check references!
  3. Limit Access to the Spending and Collecting of Money.
    One office we recently worked with had 8 people with company credit cards.
  4. Keep a Healthy Professional Skepticism.
    An embezzler is commonly the doctor’s most trusted employee and thus has the most access to money and records.
  5. Implement Internal Controls and Don’t Cut Corners.
    Internal Controls—procedures designed to reduce the risk of fraud and error—can often be annoying to work with. For example, requiring the doctor to sign every check is much more cumbersome than using a signature stamp. But don’t cut corners.

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Ryan MillarDental Practice Embezzlement

Merry Christmas. Lessons Learned by Mr. Potter

Nate Williams Investments Leave a Comment

When I was young my family would often watch Frank Capra’s “It’s a Wonderful Life” at Christmas time. Many years have passed since the last time I saw the movie. But this year, with it showing free on Amazon Prime, I let the kids stay up late one night and we watched this Christmas classic, popcorn and all.

As the story unfolded, I found myself seeing George Bailey differently than I ever have. In many ways I saw myself in him, and I saw many of you. Trying to do the right thing. Trying to meet the demands and expectations of life. Trying to run a small business. Trying to raise a family. Trying to balance the expectations and dreams of a life of adventure and charm with the realities and humdrum of the daily grind. As the pressures mount, George breaks down and loses it. With this viewing, instead of being amused by George, I felt compassion for him.

I love this story for the rich messages of love, kindness, hope and forgiveness. And I love it for how this movie beautifully teaches the value of a human life, even the “worth of a soul.”

Clearly George is the star of the show. But there is another lesson to be learned that is applicable today by Mr. Henry F. Potter, the old miser and George’s arch enemy. Mr. Potter is mean, heartless and sour. He is the embodiment of greed and the antithesis of the Christmas spirit. He gives a great example of how to end up unhappy and alone.Read More

Nate WilliamsMerry Christmas. Lessons Learned by Mr. Potter

Repost: Investing Strategically, Not Emotionally

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This article is featured in the fall edition of our 360 Insights Quarterly Client Newsletter.

By J. William G. Chettle

While many of us understand that our emotions can compromise our long-term financial goals, it isn’t always easy to ignore media hype. But letting emotions guide our investment decisions can have a real impact on our portfolios.

Sometimes what seems like a reasonable investment strategy is actually emotions in disguise. We believe these emotional strategies can be particularly harmful, because at first glance they may seem like good, even rational, ideas.Read More

Nate WilliamsRepost: Investing Strategically, Not Emotionally