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Ref No: M5858E
County: Essex
Location: Halstead
Tenure: Leasehold
Was £22,500 - NOW £18,500!
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Ref No: C5746E
County: Essex
Tenure: Leasehold
Was £260,000 - NOW £199,995!
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Ref No: G5833E
County: Essex
Tenure: Leasehold
Was £75,000 - NOW £69,500!
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Ref No: C5880E
County: Essex
Tenure: Leasehold
Was £70,000 - NOW £64,999!
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Ref No: C4928C
County: Cambridge
Tenure: Leasehold
Was £115,000 - NOW £99,000!
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MOT (CLASS 1, 2 & 4) SERVICES,...
Ref No: A5741S
County: Suffolk
Tenure: Leasehold
Was £125,000 - NOW £99,000!
View Details »

Business Buying Guide

If you are considering buying a business and are a first time buyer, to assist in buying a business we have prepared the following information guide.

Why should I buy a business?

  • To work for myself
  • To earn a living
  • To supplement other income
  • To create an investment

What type of business should I buy?

You may wish to consider the following information when deciding:

  • What skills, qualifications or experience in a sector do I have?
  • Do I have sufficient knowledge or do I need to learn more?
  • Can I afford this type of business?
  • For how long will I be financially committed?
  • Will the business provide the income I require?
  • Does this type of business fit in with family life?
  • Will it maintain my interest over time?
  • Will my family be interested and give me their support?

Should I live on the premises?

This will normally be dependent upon:

  • Your financial position as it may be an option to sell your home to raise capital
  • The nature of the business
  • Personal preferences

How much capital is needed?

Leasehold - It will cost less to buy a business and rent the premises it trades from (if applicable)

Freehold - Purchasing a business and the freehold property it trades from (if applicable) will cost more but you will not have to answer to a landlord and pay rent! Although if you finance the purchase through a bank you will still have them to answer to!

Different businesses hold varying amounts of stock this is a big consideration when deciding.

Enough capital will be required to cover all professional costs incurred to include:

  • solicitors, accountants and survey/valuation fees and stock taking costs
  • Sufficient working capital (enough money to live on, cover your initial overheads and replace stock as you build the business)

How do you raise funds?

You will normally require a substantial deposit to borrow money to buy a business.

There are several fund generating options:

  • Re-mortgaging your house
  • Selling your house
  • Obtaining a bank, building society or finance house mortgage/loan

Bradleys Countrywide is happy to put you in touch with brokers and banks that will provide you with sound financial advice and have good sources of funds.

I have seen a business advertised I am interested in, what do I do next?

  • Register your interest with the agent
  • Complete a confidentiality questionnaire if required
  • Make an appointment through the agent (never make a direct approach to the business)
  • Be discreet - the vendor may not want his staff or customers to be aware that he is in the market to sell his business
  • Prepare in advance of your visit the questions you would like answered
  • Take notes during or after your visit
  • Contact the agent to give your thoughts and register your further interest and to obtain further information

I have viewed a business and I am interested, what should I do next?

  • Request accounting information and once received consult your accountant who will then be able to advise you on the advantages and disadvantages of buying the business from a financial viewpoint
  • Ask the business agent to find out the answers to any questions you may have as its better to do this before Solicitors are instructed and legal costs are incurred
  • Make sure you can raise or have sufficient funds to purchase
  • Once you are happy and you have decided the business is for you make a formal offer through the business agent first by telephone and then in writing
  • Head your letter 'Subject to contract'. It is recommended you include that phrase in all subsequent written communications

Business Valuation

If you are financing a purchase with a business loan or commercial mortgage the lender will normally appoint there own panel surveyor for this purpose. If you are self funding the acquisition or remortgaging an existing property a business valuation is normally not required. However unless you are 100% sure the price you are paying is correct you should have it independently valued. If you are NOT purchasing through Bradleys we are happy to provide an independent appraisal of the business. If you ARE purchasing through Bradleys it would be a conflict of interest to value it for you so we are happy to recommend a national firm of valuers for this purpose.

What do I need to do to commence purchase proceeding?

Once you have agreed a price and reached an agreement to purchase through the agent you will need to Instruct a reputable firm of Solicitors who are experienced in Business Transfer conveyancing. Using an experienced Solicitor will save you time and ultimately worry throughout the transaction. Your agent should have established relationships with many Solicitors and be able to recommend one for you. Bradleys can assist in recommending Solicitors

Once Solicitors have been instructed they should:

  • Conduct a search at the local planning office and the land registry office
  • Check all relevant licences, consents and the like
  • Retain a reputable commercial surveyor to conduct a survey and valuation.

If a mortgage or loan is involved the finance house, building society, or bank will insist upon their own full survey and valuation at your expense.

If you are buying a business and taking on the premises it trades from 'leasehold' your business agent or Solicitor will take up references from your bank, accountant current or previous landlord, trade suppliers (where available) and possibly personal references to submit to the landlord for his approval and consent to the assignment of lease to your name.

Providing that you still intend to buy, we would now recommend that the vendor and you undertake to share the cost of an independent stock valuation. Bradleys Countrywide can assist in recommending Stocktakers. A good agent should be able to assist in all areas of your acquisition.

Am I now in a position to exchange contracts and complete?

Where possible try and negotiate a transitional period with the vendor. Ask the vendors of the business if they would be happy to provide you with some 'in house' training for an agreed period of time upon completion, to ensure a smooth handover. This should be long enough to enable you to become fully familiar with:

  • The business
  • Its practices
  • Its customers and suppliers

Contact your agent for assistance.

Bradleys are happy to hear from buyers and sellers at anytime before, during or after completion.

Bradleys have been established since 1959 and have a wealth of experience in selling most business sectors. Please feel free to contact us at any stage of the transaction. T: 01702 551334 or E: [email protected]

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