If you are an entrepreneur at heart, chances are you have been waiting for the right opportunity to come along. The thought of buying a business may be intimidating, but it can also be exhilarating when you are ready to take the big step. Before you invest what is likely a sacrificial amount of money, you may want some tips for finding just the right business to suit you.
It is not enough to purchase the first Ottawa business that becomes available or to search in one particular neighbourhood. There are numerous factors that can combine to improve the chances of success for your new venture.
Do your homework before jumping in
You should not be the only one who knows you are in the market for purchasing a business. Networking is a great way to discover opportunities you may not have found otherwise. You may speak to brokers, other business owners you know, or those you meet at trade shows. The information and leads you get in these areas will likely surpass what you may read in print or online ads. You may also consider the following steps recommended by business advisors:
- Decide if you are better suited for franchise ownership or an independent business.
- Consider whether an online business may be more suitable for your goals.
- Evaluate the structure of any business for sale, including the physical space, accessibility, and any equipment or inventory included.
- Assess the business' current relationships with clients, suppliers and neighbours.
- Gain an understanding of the current status of sales, whether they are increasing or declining.
If you are looking at a business with decreasing sales, you may have confidence in your talents to turn things around. Perhaps the failure is more attributable to poor management than a product or service in decline, in which case you may be able to quickly make it profitable. However, it is wise to beware of any business proposition that seems suspiciously attractive. Seeking the advice of people you trust may help you avoid getting in over your head.
Of course, the need for wise guidance does not end after you make your purchase. Getting your business off on the right foot takes careful planning and insight. You may benefit most from a legal professional who can guide you through the process of purchasing your business and remain beside you throughout the life of your new venture.