Selling Your Small Business? Don't Use A Real Estate Agent

21 May 2015
 Categories: Business, Blog


When it comes to buying property or finding a rental space for your business, a real estate agent is the perfect professional to contact. However, there are certain reasons that same real estate agent is not such a good fit for selling your small business and a business broker is definitely the better option. 

If you own the property your business is on, then you should definitely employ an agent to handle the sale of the property itself. However, often times a small business buyer prefers to rent the property it resides on over owning it to keep their costs down. This will mean, you will need to separate the sale of the business with the sale of the property.

A Business Broker Helps to Prepare for Sale

While an agent can help with property sale, they can't help you prepare the actual business for sale. A business broker, however, can help ensure you have everything you need to sell your operating business.

This means having detailed income and financial statements ready for the purchaser, balance sheets and cash flows and a detailed account of where the company is heading. You need to provide customer lists, subscription rates and analysis of how competitive your business is in the market. A buyer will want to know the owner benefits, business costs and any personal benefits for the owner as well.

Finally, a buyer may well want to know about the business' employees and their performances, as well as compensation levels. There are also legal considerations such as liabilities, asset sales and warranties that only someone with experience in business can help you prepare.

Business Brokers Work With You

A business broker works with you to position your business for sale in the best way possible for your type of company. The broker has access to buyers in all genres and their payment can be commission based (like a real estate agent) or fee-for-service.

It is important to formulate a business sale plan outlining all key aspects of your business. A professional broker will guide you through the process and help to negotiate terms with a new buyer. This can include escrow, hold backs, owner financing options and more.

Selling a business can be a complicated process and it can easily turn bad if you aren't prepared for it. While you might be tempted to contact a real estate agent, bear in mind, they don't have the business experience to help deal with all the nuances of an operating business sale. For more information, contact a company that specializes in preparing small businesses for sale.