How to Start a Mobile MRI Business

The medical needs of our society are always changing. The ability to reach patients and serve a wider range of individuals who cannot make their way to regional health centers is incredibly important. With a mobile MRI business, underserved patients can gain access to an incredibly complex medical machine. This business takes time, capital, and resources to successfully open and operate. However, the initial investments are paid back quickly.

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Learn how to start your own Mobile MRI Business and whether it is the right fit for you.


Start a mobile mri business by following these 10 steps:

You have found the perfect business idea, and now you are ready to take the next step. There is more to starting a business than just registering it with the state. We have put together this simple guide to starting your mobile mri business. These steps will ensure that your new business is well planned out, registered properly and legally compliant.

Check out our How to Start a Business page.

STEP 1: Plan your business

A clear plan is essential for success as an entrepreneur. It will help you map out the specifics of your business and discover some unknowns. A few important topics to consider are:

Luckily we have done a lot of this research for you.

What are the costs involved in opening a mobile mri business?

The costs to open a mobile MRI business are high compared to other businesses. An MRI machine alone can cost between $150,000 to $3,000,000. Of course, the price is dependent on a number of factors and features. In addition to the cost of the MRI machine, the station that will be used to create a mobile MRI must also be considered. Trailers or RVs must be modified to make the mobile MRI station. After those costs are considered, state licenses, certifications, and insurance requirements will also quickly add up. Finally, expenses related to employees and long-term storage for this large mobile station will need to be paid to get this business started.

What are the ongoing expenses for a mobile mri business?

Numerous ongoing expenses are required for this business. The MRI must be maintained and serviced often. The station that holds the MRI must also be inspected after each booking. Any employees or medical professionals on staff will have recurring salaries. Marketing, promotion, tours, utilities, and long-term storage are all additional ongoing expenses.

Who is the target market?

The target market is health care facilities and organizations that provide medical services. A mobile MRI adds to the services these businesses can offer. By partnering with these organizations, it will be easier to provide mobile MRI services. A secondary target market includes government organizations.

How does a mobile mri business make money?

This business makes money by taking reservations for the mobile MRI station. Without bookings, this business will not generate revenue. It takes time and planning to ensure the station is placed in the correct area. Very rarely will a last-minute call result in the mobile MRI business going and setting up that same day.

How much can you charge customers?

MRI scans are already costly. The clients and customers you will interact with understand the costs of MRI machines and maintenance. Most bookings will be longer than just a day. The average monthly cost for a mobile MRI station ranges from $20,000 to $40,000.

How much profit can a mobile mri business make?

The profit that can be made from a mobile MRI business is exponential after the initial costs are paid off. It could be a few years to a decade before a significant profit is achieved through this business. However, annual profits that exceed $1 million are possible.

How can you make your business more profitable?

The more mobile MRI stations that are available for rent, the more profits you can achieve. Marketing this business in an area that has the right needs and the right medical care facilities to partner with can help this business grow faster. Since the mobile MRI station needs long-term storage, finding a storage facility that is affordable and easily accessible will help keep profits high.

What will you name your business?

Choosing the right name is very important. Read our detailed guide on how to name your business. We recommend checking if the business name you choose is available as a web domain and securing it early so no one else can take it.

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STEP 2: Form a legal entity

The most common business structure types are the sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation.

Establishing a legal business entity such as an LLC or corporation protects you from being held personally liable if your mobile mri business is sued.

Form Your LLC

Read our Guide to Form Your Own LLC

Have a Professional Service Form your LLC for You

Two such reliable services:

You can start an LLC yourself and pay only the minimal state LLC costs or hire one of the Best LLC Services for a small, additional fee.

Recommended: You will need to elect a registered agent for your LLC. LLC formation packages usually include a free year of registered agent services. You can choose to hire a registered agent or act as your own.

STEP 3: Register for taxes

You will need to register for a variety of state and federal taxes before you can open for business.

In order to register for taxes you will need to apply for an EIN. It's really easy and free!

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You can acquire your EIN for free through the IRS website, via fax, or by mail. If you would like to learn more about EINs and how they can benefit your LLC, read our article, What is an EIN?.

Learn how to get an EIN in our What is an EIN guide or find your existing EIN using our EIN lookup guide.

Small Business Taxes

Depending on which business structure you choose, you might have different options for how your business will be taxed. For example, some LLCs could benefit from being taxed as an S corporation (S corp).

You can learn more about small business taxes in these guides:

There are specific state taxes that might apply to your business. Learn more about state sales tax and franchise taxes in our state sales tax guides.

STEP 4: Open a business bank account & credit card

Using dedicated business banking and credit accounts is essential for personal asset protection.

When your personal and business accounts are mixed, your personal assets (your home, car, and other valuables) are at risk in the event your business is sued. In business law, this is referred to as piercing your corporate veil.

Additionally, learning how to build business credit can help you get credit cards and other financing in your business's name (instead of yours), better interest rates, higher lines of credit, and more.

Open a business bank account

  • This separates your personal assets from your company's assets, which is necessary for personal asset protection.
  • It also makes accounting and tax filing easier.
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Recommended: Read our Best Banks for Small Business review to find the best national bank, credit union, business-loan friendly banks, one with many brick-and-mortar locations, and more.

Open net-30 accounts

When it comes to establishing your business credit, net-30 vendors are considered the way to go. The term "net-30," which is popular among vendors, refers to a business credit arrangement where the company pays the vendor within 30 days of receiving goods or services.

Net-30 credit terms are often used for businesses that need to obtain inventory quickly but do not have the cash on hand.

Besides establishing business relationships with vendors, net-30 credit accounts get reported to the major business credit bureaus (Dun & Bradstreet, Experian Business, and Equifax Business Credit). This is how businesses build business credit so they can qualify for credit cards and other lines of credit.

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Recommended: Read our guide on the best net-30 vendors so you can start building business credit now, so you never have to worry about cash flow in the future. Keep in mind that poor cash flow is the #1 reason businesses fail!

Get a business credit card

  • This helps you separate personal and business expenses by putting your business' expenses all in one place.
  • It also builds your company's credit history, which can be useful to raise money and investment later on.

STEP 5: Set up business accounting

Recording your various expenses and sources of income is critical to understanding the financial performance of your business. Keeping accurate and detailed accounts also greatly simplifies your annual tax filing.

STEP 6: Obtain necessary permits and licenses

Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.

STEP 7: Get business insurance

Just as with licenses and permits, your business needs insurance in order to operate safely and lawfully. Business Insurance protects your company’s financial wellbeing in the event of a covered loss.

There are several types of insurance policies created for different types of businesses with different risks. If you’re unsure of the types of risks that your business may face, begin with General Liability Insurance. This is the most common coverage that small businesses need, so it’s a great place to start for your business.

Learn more about General Liability Insurance.

Another notable insurance policy that many businesses need is Workers’ Compensation Insurance. If your business will have employees, it’s a good chance that your state will require you to carry Workers' Compensation Coverage.

STEP 8: Define your brand

Your brand is what your company stands for, as well as how your business is perceived by the public. A strong brand will help your business stand out from competitors.

If you aren't feeling confident about designing your small business logo, then check out our Design Guides for Beginners, we'll give you helpful tips and advice for creating the best unique logo for your business.
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Recommended: Get a logo using Truic's free logo Generator no email or sign up required, or use a Premium Logo Maker.

How to promote & market a mobile mri business

The best way to promote and market this business is through traditional networking tactics. Visiting organizations and facilities that can benefit from mobile MRI equipment will help this business get in front of the right people.  Since the individuals who will sign off on your service are a niche group, marketing and promoting the facilities is not enough. You need to get directly in front of decision-makers in order to start booking clients.

How to keep customers coming back

To attract and retain customers, the mobile MRI station must be flawless. Tours should be provided that allow decision-makers to see what it is they are renting. If you offer a team of medical professionals to operate the machine, in addition to renting the mobile MRI station, make sure these individuals’ qualifications are readily available for prospective clients to review.

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Still unsure about what kind of business you want to start? Check out the latest Small Business Trends to help inspire you.

STEP 9: Create your business website

After defining your brand and creating your logo the next step is to create a website for your business.

While creating a website is an essential step, some may fear that it’s out of their reach because they don’t have any website-building experience. While this may have been a reasonable fear back in 2015, web technology has seen huge advancements in the past few years that makes the lives of small business owners much simpler.

Here are the main reasons why you shouldn’t delay building your website:

  • All legitimate businesses have websites - full stop. The size or industry of your business does not matter when it comes to getting your business online.
  • Social media accounts like Facebook pages or LinkedIn business profiles are not a replacement for a business website that you own.
  • Website builder tools like the GoDaddy Website Builder have made creating a basic website extremely simple. You don’t need to hire a web developer or designer to create a website that you can be proud of.

Using our website building guides, the process will be simple and painless and shouldn’t take you any longer than 2-3 hours to complete.

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Recommended: Get started today using our recommended website builder or check out our review of the Best Website Builders.

Other popular website builders are: WordPress, WIX, Weebly, Squarespace, and Shopify.

STEP 10: Set up your business phone system

Getting a phone set up for your business is one of the best ways to help keep your personal life and business life separate and private. That’s not the only benefit; it also helps you make your business more automated, gives your business legitimacy, and makes it easier for potential customers to find and contact you.

There are many services available to entrepreneurs who want to set up a business phone system. We’ve reviewed the top companies and rated them based on price, features, and ease of use.

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Recommended: Find the best phone system for your business; check out our review of the Best Business Phone Systems 2021.

Start A Mobile MRI Business In Your State

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Select your state below for an in-depth guide on completing each of these steps in your home state.

Is this Business Right For You?

This business is right for a medical professional who is ready to serve patients in underdeveloped areas. From rural towns to underserved communities, a mobile MRI business requires quite a bit of time on the road away from home. The person who runs this business needs to have a passion for healthcare and assisting individuals.

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Want to know if you are cut out to be an entrepreneur?

Take our Entrepreneurship Quiz to find out!

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What happens during a typical day at a mobile mri business?

A typical day in a mobile MRI business will include getting on the road and getting the station to its intended destination. Depending on the length of the rental, the mobile MRI may be available for a day, week, or month. While the station is operating, a team of healthcare providers will screen patients, provide MRIs, and interrupt results. Once the end of the rental has arrived, the mobile MRI will need to be packed up and returned to its long-term storage.

What are some skills and experiences that will help you build a successful mobile mri business?

Knowledge in the medical industry is required in order to successfully run this business. HIPAA compliance, medical jargon, and MRI basics are all essential for day-to-day operations. Additionally, having experience working or speaking to medical providers and medical equipment manufacturers is a plus.

What is the growth potential for a mobile mri business?

The growth potential for a mobile MRI business is exponential. Many communities do not have direct access to hospitals that feature MRI machines. This business allows for growth in local communities across counties, throughout states, and even across the country.

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Take the Next Step

Find a business mentor

One of the greatest resources an entrepreneur can have is quality mentorship. As you start planning your business, connect with a free business resource near you to get the help you need.

Having a support network in place to turn to during tough times is a major factor of success for new business owners.

Learn from other business owners

Want to learn more about starting a business from entrepreneurs themselves? Visit Startup Savant’s startup founder series to gain entrepreneurial insights, lessons, and advice from founders themselves.

Resources to Help Women in Business

There are many resources out there specifically for women entrepreneurs. We’ve gathered necessary and useful information to help you succeed both professionally and personally:

  • Funding
  • Events
  • Guides
  • Support

If you’re a woman looking for some guidance in entrepreneurship, check out this great new series Women in Business created by the women of our partner Startup Savant.

What are some insider tips for jump starting a mobile mri business?

This business will take time to grow. Partnering with nonprofits and large-scale organizations to offer this service will help market your business and grow your client base from the beginning.

How and when to build a team

Depending on your state’s laws, you may be able to offer a team in addition to your mobile MRI station. This allows your clients to retain the workforce they have and not stretch themselves too thin. However, you need to make sure these individuals are the best MRI technicians and providers in the area. You can post on job boards, speak to medical schools, and conduct numerous interviews to find the right team.

In addition to medical professionals, you will eventually need to build an outreach team. These individuals should focus on calling, emailing, and visiting facilities to find potential partnerships. Furthermore, this team should coordinate with nonprofits to help provide MRI scans to areas that would otherwise not receive them.

Next Steps

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