Frequently Asked Questions

Determining the right price when you’re set to sell your business is of utmost importance. Both overpricing and underpricing can adversely
affect your sale. Getting the price right from the get-go is crucial. The final sale price of any business is ultimately dictated by market conditions. However, with nearly 25 years of business experience, and as a nationally renowned business broker, Jim Parker can provide an unbiased and fair market value range for your business. His team offers a Broker’s Opinion of Value (BOV) free of charge, with no obligation to employ his services.

In the process of selling your business, maintaining confidentiality is absolutely critical. Every aspect of our front-end and back-end marketing strategies are designed to ensure that your employees, suppliers, vendors, and competitors are unaware of your business’s sale. Jim and his team diligently pre-screen potential buyers, assessing their financial abilities, relevant experience, and motivations. After this screening, these potential buyers are required to sign a confidentiality agreement before any specific details about your business are disclosed. With nearly 25 years of experience selling businesses, Jim and his team have always upheld confidentiality without ever causing a serious breach.

Absolutely, you will be working directly with Jim. In fact, you can reach out to Jim right now on his direct line at 407-927-8999 to discuss the potential sale of your business. Your conversation will be confidential and there’s no obligation. As your listing agent/broker, Jim will oversee the entire sales process, and he will be your primary point of contact. You will also have access to the services of his entire team, and will interact at some point with each member – including the Listing Manager, Writer, and Senior Advisor.

Jim and his team operate on a success fee structure, meaning there are no upfront fees. They are compensated only when your business is successfully sold. If for any reason they are unable to utilize their skills, experience, and connections to sell your business within the agreed timeframe, they will not receive any compensation. According to national statistics, as low as 10% of all businesses listed for sale in the United States actually sell. However, Jim’s success rate is significantly higher, at nearly 90%, thanks to his proven Business Sales Success System™. The small percentage that he doesn’t sell is typically due to a decline in the business’s financial performance after listing or the surfacing of undisclosed issues. To dramatically increase your chances of selling, securing a higher price and better terms, and achieving a quicker sale, contact Jim today for a confidential discussion.

While the industry standard for selling a business typically spans 6-12 months, and sales sometimes take even longer, Jim and his team have a proven track record of achieving much quicker results. Using the Business Sales Success System™, they have managed to get the majority of the businesses they sell under contract within 60 days of hitting the market. However, each sale is unique and can vary based on the location, size, and specific nature of your type of business. Therefore, while it’s pragmatic to plan for a 6-12 month process, you might be pleasantly surprised when Jim and his team expedite the sale considerably.

Regrettably, national statistics indicate that a mere 10% of businesses listed for sale actually manage to close a deal, leaving a staggering 90% unsold. This is a disheartening reality, but with Jim’s guidance, the odds significantly improve. Jim is highly selective about the businesses he represents, ensuring that they are a good fit for his unique “Business Sales Success System™”.

As a result, his success rate is 9 times higher than the national average. Not only does this approach lead to a higher likelihood of selling, but it also typically secures a robust selling price, favorable terms, and an expedited process.

The unfortunate reality is that about 50% of business deals that enter into contract negotiations end up falling through before reaching the closing table. However, this is a rarity when it comes to transactions managed by Jim. His thorough approach involves envisioning the entire process before the business is even listed for sale, much like a seasoned chess player planning several moves ahead. This strategy significantly enhances the likelihood of closing the sale successfully.

As a business owner, if there are hidden issues or “skeletons in the closet”, it’s beneficial to bring them up in your initial conversations with Jim. This allows him to strategize on potential workarounds early on. Moreover, it’s crucial to either maintain or grow your business performance once you list it for sale, as any decline can negatively impact the sale prospects.

It’s crucial that you actively participate in the sale process and maintain a close connection with Jim and his team, adhering to their advice and strategic guidance. It is also important to maintain an appealing physical appearance for your business, by keeping the premises tidy and organized, making necessary repairs or replacements to furniture, fixtures, and equipment, and sprucing up the place with a fresh coat of paint if needed.

Keeping your financials organized and ready for prospective buyers, as well as completing suggested paperwork, helps to create a smooth transaction process. Understanding in advance the entire business sales process and being upfront with Jim and potential buyers about the advantages and disadvantages of your business can help avoid any unpleasant surprises later.

Finally, continue running your business as effectively as you can until the day the ownership is transferred. Keeping your business in top shape throughout the selling process will help ensure a successful outcome.

When potential buyers evaluate a business for purchase, several key factors come into play. Buyers look for proven sustainability and a solid customer base, which indicates steady cash flow and opportunities for growth. They also want confirmation that the claimed sales are accurate and verifiable.

Pricing is another major consideration. Buyers typically compare several businesses and are astute in recognizing overpriced listings. Those that command higher prices and perform well in the market usually have at least five years of operational history, a favorable long-term lease, and a trend of improved performance from year to year.

The existing customer base is often a business’s most valuable asset. Building a new client roster can take years, so having an established client base is a significant advantage.

Prospective buyers also tend to place a high value on a well-trained, dedicated staff. While good, up-to-date equipment is essential, it’s the people behind the operation that often make the most difference. The range of services offered is also an important consideration. In addition, buyers are attracted to businesses where the owner usually works no more than 45 hours per week and has diligently filed accurate tax returns.

Buyers of businesses in this size range typically do not consider unreported cash in their offering price. SBA lenders and investors rely on accurate financial information to assess the cash flow of the business and determine if it can support the loan payments and provide a suitable salary for the buyer. Accordingly, we do not take unreported cash into account when conducting a Broker’s Opinion of Value.

We strongly encourage the reporting of all cash sales. Failing to do so can have detrimental effects on the value and marketability of your business. While it may be tempting to avoid paying taxes on unreported cash, it can have a significant long-term impact.

When a business is sold, the effect on the lease will vary, depending on the specific agreement and the involvement of the landlord. In some cases, the lease can be assigned to the buyer with the approval of the landlord. After a purchase contract has been signed, Jim and his team will work closely with your landlord or property management company to facilitate the transfer of the lease.

Alternatively, the seller may be released from the lease, and a new lease agreement will be executed at the time of closing. In most situations, the seller needs to remain on the lease as a guarantor.

Lease negotiations and transfers can be complex, but with Jim’s expertise and the support of his team, you can navigate this process with confidence so that the new owner can seamlessly continue operating the business.

One option is to sell both the real estate and the business to the buyer; this can be advantageous for the buyer in terms of obtaining bank financing. If you choose to do this, we recommend that you allow Jim to use the experienced commercial real estate agent at his office. Doing so will help to protect the confidentiality of the sale, address logistical issues, and ensure that the closings for the business and property take place simultaneously.

Another option is to sell only the business and then lease the premises to the new owner. This allows you to retain ownership of the real estate while transferring the business. This arrangement can be beneficial to both parties, as the buyer can focus on operating the business while you continue to generate rental income from the leased property.

Additionally, there may be hybrid options that combine elements of selling the business and real estate in a manner that suits your specific circumstances. Jim is well-versed in these options and can discuss them with you and advise you on the best approach based on your individual situation.