Key Questions to Consider When Selling Your Business – From John LaMay

How should the purchase of a business be structured? This is a point that you’ll want to address early in the sale process.  For most people, buying or selling a business is one of the most, if not the most, important business decision that they will ever make.  For this reason, it is vital not to wait until the last minute to structure your deal.

Let’s turn our attention to the most significant questions that you need to answer when entering the sales process.

  1. What is My Lowest Price?

The first question you should ask yourself is, “What is the lowest price I’m willing to take?”  If an offer is made, the last thing you want is to be sitting around trying to decide if you can take a given offer at a given price.  You need to be ready to jump if the right offer is made.

  1. What are the Tax Implications?

Secondly, you’ll want to seriously consider the tax consequences of any sale.  Taxes are always a fact of life and you need to work with a professional tax accountant, to understand the tax implication of any decision you make.

  1. What are the Interest Rates?

The third factor you want to consider is interest rates.  If you get a buyer, what is an acceptable interest rate for a seller financed sale?

  1. Are there Additional Costs Involved?

A fourth key question to ask yourself is do you have any unsecured creditors that have not been paid off?  Additionally, you’ll also want to determine whether or not the seller plans on paying for a part of the closing costs.

  1. Will the Buyer Need to Assume Debt?

Finally, will the buyer need to assume any long-term or secured debt?  The issue of long term and/or secured debt is no small issue. Note that in most asset sales, the buyer assumes the business debt-free.  Stocks sales may be handled differently. Be sure to clarify this important point well in advance.  Keep in mind that favorable terms typically translate to a higher sales price in a shorter period of time.

Business brokers are experts at buying and selling all kinds of businesses.  When it comes time to structure a deal that benefits both the buyer and the seller, business brokers can prove to be invaluable.  At the end of the day, working with a business broker is one of the single biggest steps you can take to ensure that your business is sold and sold as quickly as possible.

 

John LaMay and Copyright: Business Brokerage Press, Inc.

John LaMay is an Advisor with Sunbelt Business Brokers. He can be reached at (408) 436-1900, x 105, or at jlamay@sunbeltbayarea.net