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10 Steps to Selling Your Business with First Choice Business Brokers

  1. Schedule an appointment to meet with a First Choice Business Sales Professional.
  2. Gather documents requested by your FCBB Business Broker for your meeting.
  3. During your meeting you will be asked a series of comprehensive questions to help us develop a clearer picture of your business and what approach we will take to obtain buyer interest in YOUR business.
  4. Determine Market Valuation/Price for your business utilizing FCBB's proven valuation methods including discretionary income and expenses.
  5. Listing Agreement authorizing FCBB to represent you in the sale of your business.
  6. Seller pre-approval of Listing Marketing/Advertising and potential terms offered.
  7. FCBB Business Broker to manage Buyer inquiries and Buyer pre-qualification process including buyer signing of NDA (Confidentiality Agreement)
  8. FCBB Business Broker to arrange meeting between Buyer and Seller.
  9. FCBB Business Broker to assist in writing and/or presenting offers and subsequent contract negotiations.
  10. FCBB Business Broker to manage the timeline from offer acceptance to closing (transfer of ownership to the Buyer)

Sellers Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

Why should I use a Business Broker to sell my business?
Business Owners who have sold a business in the past will likely tell you it is long, stressful process. Selling your own business can actually hurt the value of your business as it takes your focus away from the day to day operating of your business at a critical time when you should be increasing or at least maintaining your current business. When a Business Broker assists you in the process it can pay off in more ways than just the price obtained. Business Brokers will help properly value your business, reach out to buyers they already have, reach a larger number of new buyers, allow you to continue running your business rather than taking the your focus away, maintain confidentiality and most importantly assist with the closing of your transaction based upon experience and training. The most common mistake potential Sellers make is comparing the selling of their business to selling a house. Unlike realtors, we keep your listing entirely confidential, and work with you each step of the way until we sell your business. 

Why First Choice Business Brokers (FCBB)?
With unsurpassed experience since 1994, offices across the U.S. and some of the most highly trained Business Brokers in the industry First Choice is the "Clear Choice" when it comes to choosing a Business Brokerage to represent you. Our Business Brokers are experts in the field of business evaluation, business sales, business marketing and buy/sell negotiations to satisfy both buyers and sellers alike.

How is my business for sale kept confidential?
Unlike the sale of a home or even commercial building businesses do not have a "for sale" sign. Business Sales must be kept confidential; all buyers are required to sign a NDA (Buyer Confidentiality Agreement) prior to detailed information about your business being provided. This helps to prevent employees, suppliers, customers and competitors from finding out that you are selling your business. 

How will my business be advertised?
With First Choice Business Brokers your business will be on the highest rated Websites specifically for your area as well as national and international sites. Other advertising mediums may be employed based on your type of business.

How do I know how much my business is worth?
FCBB's proven methods of valuing and marketing will put your business in the best possible position to sell. First Choice Business Sales Professionals are some of the most highly trained professionals in the industry.

How long will it take to sell my business?
The average properly priced business tends to sell in approximately 90 days however this time frame can vary greatly based on the income of your business (and how easy it is to prove), type of business, the terms offered and the area in which your business is located. Your local First Choice Business Sales Professional will provide you with more information on your local market.

Will Buyers be visiting my business?
After a Buyer has signed an NDA (Buyer Confidentiality), reviewed initial information and expressed a further interest in your business your FCBB Business Sales Professional will schedule a meeting for the Buyer to view your business at a time that is appropriate for your type of business.

How do Buyers write offers to buy my business?
Most Buyers looking at your business will be represented by a Professional Business Broker who will assist them in writing an offer that expresses their price, terms, contingencies (if any) and request for further documentation (if any). The offer will then be presented to you for your approval by your FCBB Business Broker and/or the Buyer's Agent.

Who will handle all the inquiry calls on the sale of my business?
Your First Choice Business Sales Professional is trained to deal with incoming inquires (often tire kickers) and help determine which of those Buyers might be ready to move to the next level.

Who will handle the negotiations on the sale of my business?
Your First Choice Business Sales Professional is trained to deal with negotiations on the sale of your business. Your FCBB Business Broker will help navigate you through the entire process; we'll be with you every step of the way.

How long will I have to train the person who buys my business?
This is a negotiable point but we have found that most Buyers will ask for 30 days. Some types of businesses only require a week or two of training while other more complicated businesses may require a longer familiarization period. If a longer period is required we often find that Sellers will negotiate a consulting fee for extended training periods. 

After I sell my business can I open another one at some point in the future?
All Buyers will ask that you sign a covenant not to compete within a certain area and/or time period.

Will I need to finance part of the purchase price of the business?
There is no requirement that you "carry paper" on your business however in today's market it is very common that Buyers will ask for some type of Seller Carry Note which in reality opens your business to a larger pool of Buyers.

When should I notify my employees that I am selling the business?
While you may have a close relationship with your employees it has been proven time and time again that the best time to tell your employees is when you introduce them to the new owners. This may be difficult for you emotionally however experience dictates that silence is the best practice. The exception to this rule would be if a "key" employee is part of the negotiation for the Buyer to keep them on after the sale is complete. In this case there may be some advance notice required to this person and this person alone. Your First Choice Business Broker will guide you through the proper timing for this very important part of the business sal- timing is everything!

Will my First Choice Business Broker qualify the Buyer by checking their credit?
First Choice does not check the credit of Buyers however through the offer and acceptance process you may request that the Buyer provide you with a copy of their credit report. This is not often asked of the Buyer as the property owner and/or landlord will likely be obtaining a credit report for their review.