Need advise on buying an existing company

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Mattsmowing99, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. Mattsmowing99

    Mattsmowing99 LawnSite Member
    from NEO
    Posts: 138

    Like the title says what is the best way to buy an existing 20+ year old business
  2. GreenMan33

    GreenMan33 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 13

    I am in the same process as we speak. Be sure if you can make sure he goes around and introduces you to the clients he has before they start calling him and says I am getting out of the business, so they wont find somebody else before its too late. Its a chance your willing to take. It comes with the territory not everybody is going to keep you, so keep that in mind.
  3. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,670

    my personal advice is don't do it… grow slowly, grow methodically, if that guy goes out of business tomorrow, some of those customers will become your anyway.

    business acquisitions are best done with a paid consultant at the helm, if you can't afford a consultant, you can't afford to buy the business anyway….
  4. zimmatic

    zimmatic LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 411

    Grow baby Grow
    Buying a business can be great if you are ready to grow. Few items to remember
    1. Get everything in writing
    2. Sign non disclosure documents
    3. Review the sellers books for the business for 3 years and the corresponding tax returns. The seller is placing a value on the business by these numbers. Get some professional advice on reading the numbers. They may be cooking the books its your job to find out.
    4.Take the client list and invoices and drive around to the properties (don't talk to anyone though or walk onto the properties can be trespassing) Your looking for couple of items. Is this your core prospect. Will these potential prospect fit into your business etc. You will have to additional research.
    5. TPendagast talked about a consultant, good idea if they give you unbiased information. IMO good consultants are hard to find. I have a business coach, and an accountant and a Lawyer I consult with all of them to get a perspective I might not rather see.

    Buying a business takes time so don't rush it.
    OH! DO NOT give any $$ without clear documentation so talk to your lawyer

    Like I said if you are ready to grow go for it!
  5. Chris112lee

    Chris112lee LawnSite Member
    Posts: 76

    I purchased a fairly small (250k) 15yr old business last year. Feel free to message me or call if you want to discuss anything.

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