You won't find any magic formulas for selling a lifeguard services business, especially while the market is struggling to overcome the perceptions created by a down economy.
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Success is a factor of preparation, execution and a keen eye for the market. As a business seller, you need to go into the process with the mental goal of presenting your business in the best possible light.
Working with Accountants
Accountants lay the financial groundwork for a business sale. From a seller perspective, an accountant can offer personal financial assistance, especially when it comes to handling the disposition of sale proceeds. Brokers often advise their clients to have an accountant perform an audit of the business prior to sale. In certain instances, it may be appropriate to ask your accountant to vet the financials of prospective buyers, run credit checks or even structure the terms of a seller-financed deal.
Emotions run high during the sale of a lifeguard services business. Your estimate of your company's worth is probably skewed by your emotions and your close, personal connection to the business. In our experience, the most successful sales are ones in which the seller has made an intentional effort to remain objective and set realistic expectations. A business broker can be a valuable resource in right-sizing your expectations and preparing you for market realities.
Identifying Serious Buyers
If you haven't sold a business before, prepare to be overwhelmed by tire kickers -- seemingly interested buyers who lack the capacity, ability or desire to actually purchase your lifeguard services business. Selling a business is hard enough. You can't afford to waste time on prospects that have no chance of turning their interest into an actual purchase. Good business brokers are adept at separating serious buyers from the rest of the pack. Never provide detailed information about your lifeguard services business until the prospect has been qualified as a serious buyer.
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