A Guide to Buying a Business: How to Find the Best Deal



Many people dream about purchasing their own business. However, not everyone knows how to go about buying a business. That’s why experts recommend anyone considering buying a business work with a business broker to facilitate the purchase. Here are a few ways brokers help buyers find and purchase the business of their dreams.

Evaluate Your Financial Capabilities

Purchasing a business requires a substantial investment, but there are often ways brokers can help prospective purchasers buy a business even if they don’t have the funds to pay for it outright. There are numerous financing options available, and buyers may qualify for one or more of them. The business brokerage will help buyers determine how much they can spend on a business based on their available capital.

Consider Your Abilities and Desired Lifestyle

Operating a business takes both skill and time. Most people who’ve never owned a business in the past don’t realize how many hours per week are required to operate a business. Brokers help buyers determine if they have the ability to operate a specific business. In many cases, sellers will work with buyers after the sale to help them get settled in and accustomed to the day-to-day requirements of operating the business. In other instances, key employees may be able to help a new owner grasp the routine duties involved. Many communities also have programs to help new business owners learn the ropes and succeed.

Lifestyle is another issue. Operating a business may require giving up some interests or reducing the time spent on them, at least during the first months of ownership. Every business owner soon discovers they need to make sacrifices to succeed.

Learn Everything Possible About the Business Before Buying

Many business buyers assume they’re purchasing a turnkey business that won’t require any additional investment to operate. That’s rarely the case. In many instances, equipment will be worn or outdated. Computers and other electronic devices may need updating or replacing. In some cases, the owner took care of all maintenance without obtaining outside help, and buyers may not be able to take over those duties.

Brokers encourage potential purchasers to carefully review everything possible about a business before buying. That eliminates many post-sale issues that threaten the business’s survival. Preparing for any eventuality protects the financial well-being of the buyer, so always ask questions and analyze the answers.

Take Advantage of Expert Advice

Business buyers are always encouraged to put together a team of experts to help them determine if a specific opportunity is all it’s cracked up to be. A broker should be at the top of their team member list, but a lawyer, financial advisor, and appraiser should also be on the team. Each team member plays an important role in determining if a buyer should move forward with a transaction. They also spot problems sellers should address before the closing to reduce the odds of post-sale issues developing. The issues include items like unpaid debts, employment contracts, and tax liabilities.

Take Your Time

Rushing to purchase a business is rarely necessary, and hurrying makes carefully researching the business difficult. While no one wants to lose out on an exciting opportunity, take the time needed to scrutinize the business from all angles before signing any contracts. The brokers work with clients to ensure the sale process proceeds smoothly and no details are overlooked.

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