Buyer Expectations

…are unreasonable!

I remember when I needed to put my big beautiful sailboat up for sale. I assumed I could simply point out the items that required repair, and be willing to adjust the sales price to accommodate the repairs.  My wise old boat broker quickly put that notion to rest, telling me boat buyers will demand a perfect boat.  Gulp.  Boy, was he right.  And I still had to adjust the price to get a deal done. 

Here she is…I sailed her many thousands of miles. She kept me safe.

You’ll be in the same situation when selling your business.  Let’s make sure you are prepared for buyer demands, both administratively and psychologically.

Some areas to consider:

  •  Labor – Resolve any internal workforce issues or disputes, and ensure that your buyer is aware of anything that remains open.
  • Books and Records – General clean up and proper classification of financial statements.  Pay particular attention to the accuracy of Accounts Receivables and Payables.
  • Sales Taxes – Ensure all sales tax returns are timely filed and your sales tax process is audit ready.  A buyer will expect indemnification for any liabilities that may arise after purchase.
  • Customer and Vendor Relationships – As trying as it can be, keep your customers and vendors smiling!
  • Deferred Maintenance – First impressions are hard to change, so make sure your facilities are clean, and spruced up.  Any equipment issues will be discovered during due diligence and repairs required.  Never give a buyer the impression that the business is out of control.

Get ahead of buyer expectations by closing up the loose ends – you’ll sleep well at night and be in a much stronger position to resist downward pressure on your sales price.

Bruce Swabb, CPA