Understanding Replacement Reserves in View of Storm Season
- The topic of replacement reserves is often confusing for medical practice owners:
- How much should be set aside for replacement reserves?
- Should replacement reserves be included in net operating income?
- How do replacement reserves impact cap rates and value?
What are Replacement Reserves?
Replacement Reserves are funds set aside that provide for the periodic replacement of building components that wear out more rapidly than the building itself and therefore must be replaced during the building’s economic life (short lived items).
These components typically include the replacement of the equipment, furniture, hardware, software, file storage and most assets that are part of your practice.
Now, with the advent of hurricane season in the South and East, tornadoes in the Midwest and the myriad of natural occurrences everywhere in between, an “anticipatory disaster reserve” can now be justified. This is all handled within your budgeting process, i.e. Sources & Uses of Funds.
How much should be set aside for replacement reserves? You should start by working with your insurance agent, what is the “risk rating” in for your area and adjust replacements accordingly. A good rule of thumb is to:
- Estimate replacement value along with shipping, labor and training
- Subtract the insurance coverage
- Add 30 days Gross Earnings (based off your prior years 1120)
- Include 3X marketing expense to recapture lost market share.
Replacement reserves are an important line item in any healthcare business. Capital expenditures are necessary for Continuity of Income. Yet, many people gloss over the reserves for replacement line item and often exclude it completely from the NOI calculation. The fact is that, if you include it after Earnings and before Tax it will not affect your capitalized value and it will demonstrate sound management and planning which is critical for your sustainability. This is also an excellent time to “put adversity to work for you” and get up to speed with your practice analysis, diversity of income and compliance measures including payment performance programs.