Should you lease or buy property for your medical rooms? Our pros and cons lists will help you decide

Should you lease or buy property for your medical rooms


October 19, 2023


5 mins

Every medical practitioner establishing a private practice faces this important decision: do you lease a property or purchase one outright?

The typical narrative when it comes to real estate suggests leasing is an option that affords flexibility, while purchasing property offers a more stable long-term option. There’s a lot more to it though! Deciding on the right option for you will come down to careful consideration of the pros and cons of each, alongside examination of your individual circumstances.

We’ve identified some pros and cons for leasing and buying medical property to help guide you.

Lease Property pros graphic

Leasing medical property


  • Less financial outlay. Leasing rooms will require less of a financial outlay than buying a medical property. In addition to this, often you can negotiate with motivated landlords to make any changes you require as part of the lease agreement. Leasing does require a bond and it is important to make sure you are aware of all outgoings included win the lease agreement.
  • Growth flexibility. Leasing can be a good option if your practice is projected to grow quickly. With this option you can lease more room as growth occurs. However, this scenario does require that you look for premises to lease where there is scope for you to expand without needing to relocate.
  • Access to inner city locations. In some areas, especially inner city Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne, purchasing medical space may not be economically viable. In these cases, finding a clinic room (or rooms) to lease will allow you to establish a practice in an area that would be otherwise unaffordable.
  • Joining a large specialist medical centre. If you are looking to join an established medical centre or health hub, leasing may be the only option available.
  • Location flexibility. Many specialists and surgeons consult from various locations. Leasing sessional rooms can be the ideal way to facilitate this, as you only pay for the days and hours you use the rooms.
  • Save on staffing. When starting out, it may not be necessary to have your own secretarial and administration staff. The meet and greet staff generally provided at sessional rooms may be sufficient cover for you in these early days and a real money saver. However, as you expand staffing will be a huge consideration, and a permanent base for a secretary or practice manager will be necessary.


  • Rent increases. Landlords obviously have the option of increasing the rent on a property each time the lease is renewed, so this possible increase in outlay needs to be taken into consideration.
  • Sessional restrictions. While leasing sessional rooms affords the ability to have multiple practice locations, there can be limitations to this option. You may be restricted in your ability to have ad-hoc clinics, or to change your consulting hours with other specialists and staff timetables to consider. When you own your own premises, you can change your consulting and clinic times as needed, with only staffing to consider.
  • Equipment needs. As a specialist or surgeon, what type of equipment will you need for consultations? Will you be doing minor procedures in the rooms, or will you need access to blood pressure monitors, ultrasound equipment, bladder scanners, nerve conduction studies or the like? If you choose to lease sessional rooms this equipment may not be available to you when you need it.
Buy property Cons graphic
Buy property with many benefits

Buying medical property


  • Long-term stability. Purchasing a property is a solid investment if you have the funds to invest and can secure a property in a great location — one where there is scope for your medical business to grow and flourish over time.
  • Tailoring the property to your business. Owning your business premises gives you the option to make changes to the property and expand (with council approval) as the business grows. Conversely, if after a period of time you are wanting to slow down, you have the option of subletting available space in the property to accrue extra income.
  • Equipment access. Unlike the scenario of renting sessional rooms described above, when you purchase a property for your medical practice you gain a permanent base to fit-out with all of the medical equipment and resources required for your practice to operate and thrive.
  • Freedom to set your own hours. When you own your own premises, you can change your consulting and clinic times as needed, with only staffing to consider.
  • Purchasing an established practice. Another viable purchasing option may be to find an established medical practice for sale that comes complete with fit-out. If you do not require a whole practice you could consider utilising one or two rooms and renting the rest to other other medical professionals, which will generate extra income for you.


  • Changes and modification costs. If purchasing you will need to consider how much money you require to make any changes or modifications the property needs to ensure it is suitable for your medical business.
  • Ongoing costs. Beyond the initial purchase outlay, you will need to factor in ongoing costs such as your mortgage, rates, and property maintenance.

Discuss your options with an expert

We’ve covered some important issues, but of course there is a lot to consider. Engaging with an expert in the niche field of medical real estate is a great way to gain further insights on right option for you and your medical business. Connect with agents and agencies across the country through MRO’s network of trusted experts.

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