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  #11  
Old 03-16-2013, 05:17 PM
StanWilhite StanWilhite is online now
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You're probably aware of what I'm going to tell you, but just in case you're not.........

Is there a contract between him and his customers? Will he sign a "no competition" contract? I personally wouldn't even consider buying him out without one.

If you don't have a "no compete" clause in your paperwork, all he has to do (after selling to you) is to turn around and open another lawn care co. under another name and get his old customers back.

Also, will he talk to his customers and recommend that they stay w/you?
It'd be easy for you to lose money if you're not careful, and I'm with the rest of the guys, can't imagine why you'd offer more than his asking price.

I'm thinking that, after hearing your offer, he's either raised his price and then sold it. Or, he's thinking he's way to cheap, and is re-evaluating his price to see just how high he can go w/it.

I'm afraid you may have shot yourself in the foot on this deal....but, maybe not.
Good luck, Stan
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  #12  
Old 03-16-2013, 06:49 PM
pseudosun pseudosun is offline
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Amen Stan. I have no experience with buying customers, but you stated my fear perfectly. I buy customers with no clause, then the seller gets his customers back.Yikes.
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  #13  
Old 03-16-2013, 07:17 PM
herler herler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfpro21 View Post
I disagree, I cant stand low ballers and people nickel and dime. If his business is worth close to what I think it is worth to me, then I would rather offer what he wants and seal the deal, this way he isnt seeking another buyer and his attention is on making this transition and smooth as possible for the clients, myself and himself
I can appreciate that, somebody who doesn't dicker the seller around with insulting offers when they see a good price, not many folks like you around, too many people they see a good price have to try and offer a tenth of what it's worth, makes me mad but unfortunately we still don't win them all.
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  #14  
Old 03-17-2013, 09:50 AM
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Golfpro21 Golfpro21 is offline
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thanks for the input

As of today, I have not heard back from him

Yes I stated that he would have to sign a non compete agreement

All his accounts are contract

The way the deal was structured, he would not get any money from me until the client has paid me, so I have nothing to really lose

I didn't really offer him more than he was asking, he told me he needed $30,000-$35,000 to sell, so instead of offering the low end, I went higher in the hopes he would say yes right away and we could seal this deal, as I have marketing set to launch in the coming weeks and didnt want to be dicking around with this too long.
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  #15  
Old 03-17-2013, 10:55 AM
Jimslawncareservice Jimslawncareservice is online now
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At this point, there's really nothing you can do. He may have used you as a pawn to get someone else to pay more. Who knows. I tried to buy a guy out this year. Didn't go over well. It's tough to buy smaller companies IMO. They think they have a hold mine, and want 3 years income for the Dang thing too.
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  #16  
Old 03-18-2013, 01:41 PM
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meets1 meets1 is offline
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Call him. Your a business man. Tell him hey, I gave you x days to think about so therefore where are we at? Worse case he sold, keeping or he got exciting being a fireman and forgot about your offer. Your offer, I think is reasonable.
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  #17  
Old 03-21-2013, 07:45 AM
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l3en007 l3en007 is offline
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GolfPro good luck. Is that the going going rate now a days? 25% of yearly gross?

Other than just "contracting" customers in and signing a no compete, is there any more to the system of selling/buying accounts? I've always wondered this. I feel like there has to be a "perfect" way to sell/buy customers so at the end, all the customers stay with the new company who is buying the customers.

Does a nice letter explaining what's going on work?

Does not saying anything to the customer work and just contract them in with your business and then pass then to the buyer? (Basically the buyer keeps the sellers business name) if the buyer keeps the sellers business name I would think the customer doesn't have to be notified.


I always wonder how the customer will react to this transition, maybe I over analyze it and the average customer wouldn't even care. Of course the buyer would need to offer the same if not better service.

The system of the seller not being paid until the buyer gets paid from the accounts sounds fishy to me. The seller is essentially offering the buyer (who most of the time has no idea who it is) credit right off the bat. I think I'd want it so I was paid in full before I signed over my accounts. Any info from people who have sold accounts and have had success with it would be appreciated!
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  #18  
Old 03-21-2013, 08:36 AM
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Golfpro21 Golfpro21 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by l3en007 View Post
GolfPro good luck. Is that the going going rate now a days? 25% of yearly gross?

Other than just "contracting" customers in and signing a no compete, is there any more to the system of selling/buying accounts? I've always wondered this. I feel like there has to be a "perfect" way to sell/buy customers so at the end, all the customers stay with the new company who is buying the customers.

Does a nice letter explaining what's going on work?

Does not saying anything to the customer work and just contract them in with your business and then pass then to the buyer? (Basically the buyer keeps the sellers business name) if the buyer keeps the sellers business name I would think the customer doesn't have to be notified.


I always wonder how the customer will react to this transition, maybe I over analyze it and the average customer wouldn't even care. Of course the buyer would need to offer the same if not better service.

The system of the seller not being paid until the buyer gets paid from the accounts sounds fishy to me. The seller is essentially offering the buyer (who most of the time has no idea who it is) credit right off the bat. I think I'd want it so I was paid in full before I signed over my accounts. Any info from people who have sold accounts and have had success with it would be appreciated!
I have bought out 4 different companies in the past, and it has always been 20% of what the client pays. I have never given the money upfront, because there is a good risk the client does not renew with you.

Yes we always send a letter introducing ourselves, outlining how we operate, how we bill, etc. We also have the selling company contact each client and explain, this way the client is not surprised by anything, if the wantt o move froward the are sent our contracts, once paid we pay the seller.

The cons of this set up is that you can be stuck with a few clients/properties you do not particularily like or enjoy, but if you start dropping too many clients, the seller won't get his/her money and will simply find another buyer

The pros to this is it is a fast way of building a client base, and you get them before your competition do.
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  #19  
Old 03-21-2013, 08:39 AM
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Golfpro21 Golfpro21 is offline
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This seller decided to keep his accounts, he has just been hired by the city fire dept and has to embark on a 3 month training program. He admitted he will not be able to service these accounts at all for 3 months, but has decided to hire a buddy to look after them

I figure instead of paying him the 23% we will simply pick up a chunk of them when they are unhappy with the crap service they will now be getting.
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2014 Ford F 250 Super Crew 4x4
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2010 Ford F 150 Super Crew 4X4
2011 Walker MTefi 26hp 52"
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  #20  
Old 03-21-2013, 08:44 AM
dnc19694339 dnc19694339 is offline
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I have bought out 3 guys in last 12 yrs. Always paid up front and always had no-compete signed. Every time the seller would send a nice letter stating he is selling to me and I would have my own letter in the same envelope introducing myself. Had good luck keeping most of the customers.

For the first year I got all of them, some dropped off in the next couple but thats normal anyway.
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