Common Mistakes to Avoid When Starting to Sell a Business


The day may come when you wish to sell a business on your hard work and retire. Before you sell a business and hand over the reins to someone else, whether it’s because of retirement, a new career, or anything else, it’s crucial to plan the sales process out well.

Check out these typical blunders company sellers make before negotiating to sell a business with possible buyers. Find out what you can do to be ready before starting to sell a business and how to prevent any pitfalls.

Mismanagement of paperwork

Not organizing your firm right for sale is one of the worst blunders you can make when starting to sell a business. Observations have shown that this sometimes manifests as an “over-involved” owner, sloppy record-keeping, or excessive expectations that ultimately sink the operation.

Get your company’s financial records in order and provide prospective purchasers with an honest portrayal of the company’s health before selling it. Always be as open and honest as you can be when starting to sell a business. Buyers will “dig into the weeds” and learn everything anyhow”. Those looking to purchase your company will appreciate your candor and trust in presenting the facts.

Before starting to sell a business, prospective purchasers would often request financial records like income and expense statements, balance sheets, and tax returns for the previous three years. Potential purchasers will be able to gauge the company’s profitability and decide whether or not to pursue a purchase after reading these records.

Trying to Sell During a Low-Revenue Point

It’s a typical blunder to put off when starting to sell a business until it’s too late. Always include scenarios and financial estimates in your company strategy that account for the possibility of such an occurrence.

Hold on to your firm for a few more quarters and either build it back up or let earnings plateau instead of selling while you’re in a bad situation and profits are falling rapidly. Potential purchasers are more interested in expanding businesses, but if you can’t do that, it’s best to wait and give a stable option instead. If you want to know where your company is right now, look at the TTM (trailing twelve months).

Whether intentional or accidental, a breach of confidentiality before the appropriate time may have a negative impact on a commercial transaction. Leaks of information have the ability to alert rivals to your activities, confound prospective purchasers, and even frighten or destabilize workers.

Make sure your broker knows the importance you place on privacy. Having prospective purchasers sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) before entering into talks might help keep sensitive information private. If you want to sell your company, keep the news from your staff until the sale is made. Until the time comes to sell a business officially, it’s best to keep this whole thing under wraps, except with the appropriate people.

Too Fast on Acquiring Legal Representation

When starting to sell a business, a commercial broker is your best bet. Working with an unreliable agent may be expensive and even disastrous for a transaction. Never be in a rush to execute a contract with a broker.

Find someone who is knowledgeable in selling businesses like yours and has the experience and qualifications you need. There are several options for locating a competent commercial broker, but word-of-mouth is often the most reliable. Inquire around your circle of acquaintances and other company owners for suggestions.

Simply Put

Essentially, what you’re selling is the concept behind your firm when you go to sell it. When trying to sell an investment, it’s always helpful to seem like an authority in the field. If the sale goes through, you’ll be able to go on to other projects with some financial cushion.