How to Sell a Business - Prepare for the Sale

Prepare Key Documents

Have key documents ready before showing your business to buyers

Prepare the following documents in advance, before presenting your business to buyers. Doing so will make the sale go much smoother and greatly increase the chances of successfully selling your business.

Financial Statements: Profit and loss statements, balance sheets, and any supplementary financial information. Make sure your books (QuickBooks) are up-to-date and accurate.

Lease: Find your lease, read it, and become familiar with it again. Many buyers will ask you specific questions regarding your lease. It helps to be prepared and knowledgable regarding your lease.

Have answers to the following questions:

  • What is the start date of your lease?
  • What is the expiration date of your lease?
  • Do you have options to renew? (Are these automatically transferred with the lease? Be careful on this one, they oftentimes are personal to you and are not transferred when the lease is assigned).
  • What is the base rent?
  • Does the base rent increase annually? If so, how much, specifically?
  • How much are the CAM/NNN charges? Is this included in the rent or in addition to the rent?
  • What are “permitted uses”? Many buyers want to offer a new product or service – is this allowed in the lease?
  • How much is the assignment fee?
  • What are the minimum requirements for a new buyer to be approved by the landlord?

Equipment List: If equipment is important to your business, then it is wise to prepare a detailed list of your equipment. Please email us for a sample equipment list.

Seller’s Disclosure Statement: The number one reason buyers often do not buy a business is because of “fear,” typically fear of the unknown. This document helps calm the buyer's fears by disclosing any potential issues with the business upfront.

Bank Statements: While we don’t recommend giving your bank statements to a buyer before accepting an offer, it is a good idea to have them prepared in case you do accept an offer. You can also give buyers a quick look at your bank statements to show them that you are prepared and due diligence will be quick and easy if you do accept their offer.

Need help preparing your business for sale? Call us today for assistance. We can offer you assistance in preparing your business for sale at a very low cost. With decades of experience helping sell hundreds of businesses, we can guide you in the right direction and save you countless wasted hours and thousands of dollars.

We also have complete business sale packages from as low as $500. These packages include a one- to two-hour consultation, all forms required to get an offer on your business, buyer prescreening forms, do-it-yourself guides, a complete summary on your business, a mini valuation, and much more.

Download our free book, “How to Sell a Business”, our best-selling book on Amazon