The Role of the Seller in the Process

Being prepared will help streamline the process of selling your business.

What should you anticipate? Prepare the business for the sale well in advance. The Seller must be able to substantiate, at least to the buyer’s satisfaction, the earnings of the business. Be sure your records are complete for several years back and do all pertinent legal or accounting “housecleaning” – as well as a literal sprucing-up of the property.  

Involve your advisors when necessary.  Have your accountant review and prepare your books, your attorney review your contracts, lease etc., tax professional to review possible tax implications of the sale. 

Prepare yourself and your family for life after the business sells.  What are your plans after the sale? What will you do with the free time that used to be devoted to running your business? 

Engage expert Brokers to ensure confidentiality. A breach of confidentiality surrounding the sale of a business can change the course of the transaction as well as make customers or employees nervous.  

Be reasonable in pricing your business.  Placing a reasonable price on your business is imperative because an inflated figure will either turn off or slow down potential buyers. Buyers have to be able to make the payments while still making a living from the business. Work with your business broker to arrive at the best “win-win” price.

Carry on “business as usual.” A business broker will do the marketing, showing, and negotiating for you with potential buyers so that your attention can be on day-to-day demands, maintaining sales, costs, and profits. The selling process could take as long as a year and a potential buyer needs to keep seeing a healthy business.

Anticipate information the buyer may request. In order to obtain financing, the buyer will usually need appraisals on all assets as well as information to satisfy environmental regulations (when real estate is concerned).

Be flexible on terms. As a Seller it is important to understand that almost all businesses are purchased with at least some seller-financing.

Depend upon the advice of your brokers – their knowledge of the market, financing, and tax implications – to keep the deal sweet and negotiations moving forward.

Keep the momentum up. Work with your broker to be sure that potential buyers stay on a time schedule and that offers move in a timely fashion.

Be willing to stay involved with the business after the sale. Even if you are experiencing burnout, realize that the buyer may want you to stay within arm’s reach for a while for training or consulting purposes.

Consult with your brokers to determine how you can best effect a smooth transition.

For additional information on how we can assist you in selling your business, contact us today.