Start a Marriage Counseling Practice

marriage councilor
A marriage councilor's job is to guide the couple toward a successful union. Marriage Life is no bed of roses because there are lots of challenges along the way.Marriage is about two different individuals coming together to make a home. Counseling is slightly challenging because you accommodate different kinds of people.
Before starting the business you should acquire professional qualification. A master’s degree in counseling or psychology is very important. State governments only issue licenses to qualified practitioners.
Councilors that attend to different kinds of people usually run a general practice. However narrowing the field presents better opportunities, specialization and branding.
You need to join a professional association in your country. Other things to do are secure an office, get clients and register the enterprise. Here are a few tips on how to start a private counseling practice.
How to Start a Private Counseling Practice
Choose a Niche
You should choose a niche or focus on general practice. Some sectors of counseling are teen, hardened criminals, marriage and drug addicts. Choosing a sector allows better understanding of your client’s peculiar needs.
Deepen your Knowledge
To increase knowledge try internship programs, get a mentor or read lots of publications. There are many resources such as books, e-books, conferences and seminars.
Write a Counseling Practice Business Plan
Hire a professional to write a counsel practice business plan. If you have a feasibility study and survey include data on competitors, target demography and best location.
Lease an Office Space
Lease a visible office space in a commercial area. Make sure the office is tastefully furnished to convey a relaxing atmosphere for your clients.
Use lots of neutral colors and soft hues like green and cream colors. You could operate from home in a dedicated space.
An office space requires a reception area and consultation room. Furnish the space with mahogany wood, landscape paintings and office equipment.
Some therapists practice over the phone, live-feeds or a subleased office space. Subletting is cost effective however you work under strict time constrains.
Others sublet at hourly rates only during therapy seasons. You can lease on an hourly, weekly or monthly rate.
Register the Business
To operate you need a business license and permit. Register a business name and get liability insurance.  Private practice is usually one man businesses so make it a sole proprietorships enterprise.
Employ a receptionist, secretary and administrative staff. However, most small practices operate on their own with only a receptionist. This is cost effective and increases your profit margin.
Private practitioners hardly reveal how much they charge. However an average season could cost $100-$150 per season.
While some seasoned veterans charge $200 per hour. Busy therapists see an average of 15 -30 clients per week.
Those that choose to sublet pay about $100 a month for the space. Many marriage counselors and general practitioners prefer collecting cash pay.
Do the Paper Work
There are a few important forms and legal requirements. Make sure you get help from a qualified lawyer and your association.
You need a dedicate phone number, internet connectivity and a website. You need a management system to organize your financials and therapy notes.
Office Equipment
Your basic office equipments are a phone, computer, modem and printer. You need a reception area intercom and comfortable chairs.
Build a Practice Website
Get a web developer to build the website. You could offer phone consultation and offline seasons.
Purchase a good domain name and host plan. To attract traffic use social media, classified websites and regular blog posts.
Marketing Considerations
Although newspaper advertisement could bring in a few clients use referrals form MDs and colleagues. You can list your practice in directories and sites related to your business.
To succeed as a counselor you need to think like an entrepreneur.  Find a good location, legalize your papers and use a dedicate phone number. Other requirements are build a website, set your charges and print business cards.


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