North Carolina business owners have a great deal of loyalty to their enterprises. Those who establish and operate businesses in the state devote much of their time to the endeavors, and when it comes time to sell, they want to get fair value for their efforts. Selling a small business, though, is not always easy. In many cases a business broker can help facilitate the sale by bringing buyers and sellers together. There are several things a business owner should consider before hiring a business broker.
Just as the buyer of a business should perform due diligence, so should a seller examine the background, credentials and experience of a broker. The International Business Brokers Association can be a valuable resource for business owners. It is a non-profit business brokers trade association with more than a thousand intermediaries worldwide.
Most sellers prefer to hire a business broker who works in that capacity full-time, rather than engaging a part-time broker. The fees charged by brokers vary, but a seller can expect to pay a commission of between 10 and 15 percent of the sale price of the business. Brokers who demand large fees up front should be looked upon with skepticism. It can be valuable to seek the opinions or referrals of friends and contacts. Accountants and lawyers, for example, may be able to make referrals to business brokers.
The most important thing for the seller is to get value for the business. A skilled business broker can provide effort and expertise to ease the process of a business sale. An attorney with experience in business law may be able to help by drafting the legal documents necessary for the sale and transfer of the business. An attorney may be able to assist during negotiations between buyer and seller or might offer insight regarding the structure of the sale.