Seller Financing – A Business Buyer’s Best Friend


If you are considering buying a business, you may have looked at prices of local businesses during a cursory search and wondered how you would raise the funds to buy one. In the vast majority of small business sales seller financing will be involved, which is great news for business buyers.


What is seller financing?


Seller financing happens when the business seller finances a part of the deal, essentially loaning the buyer a part of the purchase price.


Why does a buyer need to consider seller financing? Many buyers who are new to the business market initially look for traditional means of financing, like a loan from a bank. Unfortunately banks are often unwilling to finance small business deals.


Why? A bank typically only lends money if they are sure they will be repaid and if there is collateral equal to the amount loaned they can take possession of in the event of a default. A house fits this mold quite well, as a home buyer must prove steady income before getting a loan and the house itself will serve as collateral because the bank can sell the house without having to take a loss (because the home will not lose value simply because the ownership changed).


This is not the case with a small business. When a small business changes hands, in the eyes of a traditional lender the very experienced management/ownership is being replaced by new (and therefore inexperienced) management/ownership. In addition, the value of a business is not just found in the tangible assets alone, so a bank would not be able to recoup any losses by selling the business if a new owner defaults on their loan.


What this means for the business market is traditional financing is highly unlikely, so if a business seller wants to get a deal done they can either wait for the ever-illusive all-cash offer, or they can offer to finance part of the deal.


What does a deal using seller financing look like? The answer is it really can look like almost anything. Typically the buyer must come with a substantial down payment, and the deal is structured so in the event of a default on the financing, the seller takes back the business. Many seller financing deals also include provisions where inventory must be kept at a certain level (so the seller wouldn’t have to replace the inventory after taking the business back).


Why is seller financing great for buyers? First and foremost, it allows buyers to buy businesses that would be beyond the reach of those without a substantial amount of cash. Second, it forces a seller to keep some “skin in the game”, meaning the seller has a vested interest in keeping the business going and profitable long after the business changes hands, otherwise they won’t get paid back. Sellers who are willing to offer financing will typically be much more helpful for a new owner with regards to training and motivated to build the business with an eye on the future.


If you are a buyer interested in looking at businesses where seller financing is an option, talk to your business broker. They will be able to find a business that will fit with your goals.


Are you a buyer who has more questions about seller financing? Would you like to know what a seller financing deal would look like for you? Please feel free to leave us a comment or question, and we would be happy to help.




Michael Monnot






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Covid Disaster Loans, Grants and Ideas

Here is the article to view along with the video:

Small Business? How To Get Financial Relief During The Coronavirus Crisis

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Business Buyer Advice: Don’t Take Your Seller For Granted

You’ve just left the closing table, and now you are the proud owner of your very own small business. Is it time to celebrate? Sure, but you also need to hit the ground running.

Why? I’ve bought an existing business, how hard can it be to just take over the seller’s responsibilities?

Really, really hard – especially if you make the mistake of taking your seller for granted during the previously negotiated training period.

Most training periods are only two weeks long, and learning every last aspect of your new business in that short amount of time can only happen if you buckle down and take full advantage of the plethora of information a seller has to give you.

You need to learn how to do things as simple as unlocking all of the doors and disarming the alarms to as difficult as how to put together the weekly payroll. You need to learn what licenses you will need to renew and when, how to set up and pay for utilities, how to order new inventory, how to run the website and social media accounts, what customers are regulars and what they expect, who the staff are and what they bring to the table, where all of the supplies are kept… you get the idea. It’s a lot.

The list is seemingly endless, but it is absolutely manageable in the typical two week training period – you as a buyer just have to make the most of every second of that two weeks.

Why can’t I just have a much longer training period?

First and foremost because if you apply yourself, two weeks is plenty of time. Secondly, it isn’t fair to keep a seller tied to a business they no longer own for longer than 99% of new business owners are able to learn the reins.

What about the 1% who didn’t learn the reins in two weeks? What happened there?

To be completely honest, buyers who weren’t able to get it together in a typical two weeks just didn’t try. They let the seller continue to run the business for that first two weeks like the seller was going to be there forever. They didn’t bother showing up, didn’t bother putting together a list of questions and didn’t work side by side with the seller to see everything they do and why. When the two weeks were up they were handed the keys to a business they knew almost nothing about – then blamed everyone but themselves for the mess they were now in.

The lesson here is that no one knows your new business better than the person you just bought it from – so use your training period to absorb every last drop of information you can from them, before it’s too late.

Are you considering buying a business and think two weeks isn’t enough time for training? Would you like to know more about the business buying process? Please ask us! Leave any questions or concerns here and we would be happy to help.

Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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It’s New Year’s Resolution Time – No More Excuses, Buy A Business In 2019!

Anyone who’s ever had a job where they worked for someone else has considered life on the other side – as the owner of a business. The entrepreneurial dream is one where you control your own destiny and do something that gives you a reason to get up in the morning.

Many budding entrepreneurs hold back on their dream of business ownership because they think they could never afford it, owning a business is too risky or now isn’t a good time.

With the new year on the horizon, perhaps you should rethink these excuses that keep you from business ownership and start the new year on a path to your own dreams.

Excuse #1: I could never afford it.

Sure, there will always be businesses that are well outside of your price range, but think of it this way. If you had a small budget when you were looking for a place to live, you probably weren’t looking at mansions on the beach. You looked at your options within the framework of your budget. The same thing goes when you look for businesses. You might have to start small if you don’t have a lot of funds at your disposal, but small business ownership comes in many forms. If you work hard, you can make any business grow into what you need it to be. If you are shopping for businesses, you may also be able to find a seller who will take a significant down payment and seller finance the rest. You can also look into funding through the Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA, as a government agency, will require a lot of paperwork but it could help you on your path to business ownership. Talk to a business broker about what funds you have available and what your goals for business ownership are. They will likely be able to find you a few options that would be feasible.

Excuse #2: Owning a business is too risky.

Yes, owning a business comes with it’s fair share of risk. You could end up bankrupt if you don’t put in the effort to make the business into a success. You could also walk into your “stable” job tomorrow and get laid off. In the working world nothing is ever a sure thing, so if you have always wanted to own your own business (and you have the passion and drive to get you there) – entrepreneurship is just as risky as anything else. Buying an established business is also typically less risky than trying to start your own company from scratch, as the concept and location have already been proven successful. Talk to your business broker about the risks you will be taking by buying an existing business.

Excuse #3: Now isn’t a good time.

The business market fluctuates from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market and back again on a regular basis. The good news if you are buyer is the market is about to be flooded with a wave of baby boomer owned businesses, and when this wave hits the market the tide will shift in the buyer’s favor. More and more businesses list every month, so now is as good a time as any to jump in and find the right business for you. Besides, you aren’t getting any younger- so why wait to fulfil your dreams?

If you have ever considered business ownership, now is a great time to take that dream and turn it into a reality. Make your new year’s resolution one where you buy yourself a business in 2016!

Do you have questions about the kind of business you can afford? Are you concerned about the risks or timing? Please contact us today or leave any questions/comments here and we would be happy to help.

Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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What Are Business Buyers Buying?

If you are considering selling your business, then you might be curious as to what buyers are currently buying. The May 2016 BizBuySell report, The Demographics Of U.S. Small Business Buyers And Sellers (read the full report by clicking here) holds some clues:



From BizBuySell’s The Demographics Of U.S. Small Business Buyers And Sellers, May 2016 Report
(read the full report by clicking here)


Over half of the buyers looking for businesses are shooting for a business in the $100,000 – $499,999 range, great news if your business listing price falls within that range.




From BizBuySell’s The Demographics Of U.S. Small Business Buyers And Sellers, May 2016 Report
(read the full report by clicking here)


Good news also if your business fits into one of the top five categories of restaurants, retail, internet businesses, manufacturing or bars.


Do you have a business (like a restaurant or retail business between the $100,000 – $499,999 range) that hits one of the marks currently popular with buyers? Would you like to know what businesses like yours have recently sold for? Leave any questions or comments here and we would be happy to help.



Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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The Art of the Negotiation: Tips for Business Sellers

If you are trying to sell your business, then you probably already know that one major step on your path will be the negotiation of a purchase price and the negotiation of the purchase contract.


If you’ve ever been involved with the purchase of a house or a car, then you already know a little bit about how the negotiation phase is going to go. A buyer offers a price, the seller counters – and after a bit of back and forth the deal is done.


The major difference with business sales? There will be many, many more moving parts. The best way to deal with these many moving parts is to prepare yourself for the negotiation process by following these tips.


Top view of african and caucasian men shaking hands after working with reports on laptops


Tip #1

Hire a business broker and use them as an intermediary.

With so much money changing hands and with the complexities of a purchase contract, having an intermediary like a business broker can keep the deal on track. Buyers and sellers will often offend one another unintentionally and kill the deal, so the best way to avoid this pitfall is to hire a broker and listen to their advice when it comes to matters of negotiation. The most important piece of advice you will get about the negotiations? Keep the broker in the middle. Any communication during the negotiation process should go through the broker. This is the only way to keep the opposite sides of the table from offending one another.


Tip #2

Don’t freak out over the initial offer.

An initial offer is usually lower than a seller would like it to be, and in some cases the offer is perceived to be so low the seller refuses to even begin to negotiate. If you are a seller, you need to put yourself in a buyer’s shoes. If you were trying to buy a business, you would want to get it for the least amount possible, allowing for more working capital the day you take the keys. Don’t take low offers personally, instead consider them a jumping off point for negotiations. A decent buyer will justify a low offer with points that you can address individually. Just remember that the initial offer, just like your listing price, isn’t the end of negotiations – it’s the beginning.


Tip #3

Keep your head in the game and your heart off the table.

Although your business might feel like your first-born child, please remember that it isn’t. It is an investment you are now cashing in. Strong emotional attachment brings issues with letting go, issues with being easily offended and issues with overvaluing the business. Keep a level business-head and try to keep your personal feelings in check.


Tip #4

Be 100% prepared for compromise.

One last and very important point to make regarding negotiations – the final purchase price and purchase contract will be a compromise for both sides. Go into this process understanding the reality that you are not going to get everything that you want, no matter what side of the table you are on. Many deals have died because one side (or both) refused to budge over something tiny, like the value of a piece of equipment or the closing date. Stay calm, patient and willing to compromise and you will have a far better chance of reaching the closing table.


Are you a business owner who is thinking about selling and want to know more about the process? Would you like to know what businesses like yours have recently sold for? Do you want to know what a purchase contract might look like for your business? Please feel free to leave any comments or questions here and we would be happy to help.





Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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Why The Latest BizBuySell Report Is Good News For Both Business Buyers And Sellers

Overall, small business indicators continue to point toward a healthy market for buying and selling

-Bob House, Group GM of


The latest BizBuySell Insight Report covering the final quarter of 2015 is out, and it has great news for both buyers and sellers.


For sellers, the news continues to be good. Median sale price increased 7.6% over the last year, and the number of closed transactions remains high.

If you are a buyer, then the strength of small businesses in the market means good things for your future purchase. Median revenue and median cash flow of sold businesses remained strong and was even up in the last quarter of 2015.

While many are looking at 2015 and wondering where the much anticipated wave of baby boomer sellers are, the numbers indicate that baby boomer sellers continue to stay on as owners and are retiring later than the business owners of past generations. Even without the huge wave of baby boomer sellers last year, the market is starting to level out. This leveling out of the market from a seller’s market toward a buyer’s market is good for both sides of the transaction – as it means sale prices remain high and businesses are healthy overall.


Want to read more of the BizBuySell Insight Report? Click here.


Want to read more analysis? Check out this article from


Do you have questions about what the latest industry numbers mean for your business and the future of a potential sale? Want to know what the businesses you are interested in buying look like compared to the same time last year? Ask us! Please leave any questions or comments here and we will be happy to help!



Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907


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New Year, New Opportunity – Sell Your Business In 2016

The word exit printed on clothespin clipped cards in front of defocused glowing lights.


If you are a small business owner, the first quarter of the New Year is a great time to reevaluate your exit strategy for your business.


Wait, exit strategy? I don’t really have one. Should I have an exit strategy in place?


Yes, you absolutely should. Any well-conceived business plan comes with a well-defined exit strategy. That exit strategy should address a very important question:


What are your plans for the succession of your business when you are no longer able or willing to be the owner?


If you have not asked yourself this question, now is as good a time as any.


Some owners who have children automatically assume that those children will take over the reins when they retire, but as with many family-related issues, parents don’t necessarily know what their children actually want. If automatic family-succession is your current plan, but you’ve never had a serious family discussion on the subject – you need to have a talk with your kids to see if this is actually what they want.


If your children do not want to take over the business, then a great option to get back a return on your investment of time, energy and money is to sell the business.


If you don’t have kids, then selling your business is the only way to continue the legacy of what you’ve built and get a return on your investment.


Ok, so I plan to sell when I’m ready, but when is the best time?


Honestly, now.


Right now, it is a seller’s market – but it won’t be that way for much longer. Listing prices are nice and high after the economic rebound that has occurred in the last few years, and there tends to be more buyers in the market than businesses for sale. Any business seller who thinks they may want to sell in the next five years really should consider selling now. A whole wave of baby boomer business owners are on the brink of retirement, and when they decide to hang up their business owner hats and hit the golf course? The market will be flooded with newly listed businesses for sale – shifting to a buyer’s market.


Get you business on the market in 2016, before the tide turns!


Have you considered selling in the near future? Are you curious about what businesses comparable to yours have recently sold for? Ask us! Please feel free to leave any comments or questions here, and we would be happy to help.



Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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Cutting the Emotional Strings: Why Business Sellers Need to Be Mentally Ready

We come across two basic types of sellers in our business. The first type are burned out and totally ready to move on. These sellers are very motivated and typically have one foot already out the door.


The second type of seller is someone who is considering selling, but the decision has been excruciatingly difficult and the bond with their business, their clients and their entrepreneurial life is strong.


collection of various strings on white background. each one is shot separately


If you are a business seller who falls into this second category, you not only need to prepare your business to sell you need to prepare yourself.




Buyers can sometimes be insulting, and you don’t want this part of the business transaction process to keep you from a closing table. What do we mean by insulting buyers? We’re not talking about personal insults here, we’re talking about perceived insults to you business. Buyers come to the market looking for flaws, and they will use these flaws (perceived or not) to try and negotiate the best possible price they can get. A seller needs to have thick skin when the negotiating starts because your business will probably get picked apart and the value you put on the business will be whittled down. None of this is a personal attack on you. It is simply the nature of business transactions.


How do you deal with this? Know that it’s coming and realize that you would do the same things if you were in the buyer’s shoes. Negotiations happen so both sides can get the best deal possible, so leave your personal feelings aside if you want to be successful.


Another major hurdle for some buyers is the relationship they have with their clients. If you’ve known these people for many years you might feel like you should be honest with them about your intentions to sell. DON’T. Confidentiality during a business transaction is what keeps your business viable all the way to the closing table (read more about what can happen here). Telling you clients or even a loyal staff member will let the cat out of the bag and irreparably damage your business during a very important time – when you are trying to sell.


How do you keep the cat IN the bag? Don’t tell anyone about your potential sale until the deal is done. Realize that your clients aren’t yours, they belong to the business and by selling that business you are transferring those clients (and staff) on to the next owner.


Selling your business is an intense experience, so while you are collecting your financial documentation and getting the carpets cleaned for any potential buyer walk-thru – take some time to mentally prepare yourself for this big change in your life. If you are having trouble letting go – focus on what your life will be like after the sale, on what you’ll do with the proceeds from your sale and on your next big adventure.


Are you thinking about selling but are very concerned about what will happen to your clients or staff once you are gone? Do you want to know more about what you can do to prepare? Leave any questions or comments here and we would be happy to help.



Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907


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Waiting For The Perfect Time To Sell Your Business? Don’t!

Bear market risk financial concept as a heavy bearish beast walking on a high tightrope shaped as a stock market loss diagram chart representing the investment danger ahead.


You might be nearing retirement age, you might be feeling like you’d like to do something else or maybe you are just burned out. Whatever your reasons for thinking about selling your business – what’s the most important thing you should know? There is no such thing as the perfect time to sell.


You might have been waiting for the small business market to improve, you may have some magic set of numbers that your business has to hit, you might be waiting until you reach a certain age – all of these may seem like good timing and the right things to wait for.


The truth is, however, there will never be a “best” time to sell your business.


Even the best laid plans get pushed aside for reasons no one could anticipate. We see it every day. Sudden health issues for an owner or for a close family member that will require too much time and energy away from the business. A large competitor suddenly moves right down the street. The economy swings. A wave of baby-boomer business owners flood the local market by all suddenly deciding to sell.


By waiting for the “perfect” time to sell your business, you are instead setting yourself up for a situation could be less than ideal and may even force you to take a much lower offer than you would normally have considered – simply because your situation means you have to sell now and can’t wait for something better.


What to do instead? Talk to us about your current situation and the current market in your industry. Now may be a better time to sell than later, but it depends entirely on your business and your goals for selling.


The reality? A wave of baby-boomer owners will shortly be flooding the market, switching our current seller-favored climate to one that favors buyers (think less money for you). The economy is currently great, but it was also great in 2007, and look where that took us (the business market was hit just as hard as everything else during the most recent recession).


Don’t wait for perfection that doesn’t exist. Call us today.



Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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Michael Monnot


9040 Town Center Parkway
Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202


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