The 5 Biggest Mistakes Made When Getting a Business Appraised

Most business owners will, at some point, want or need to know how much their business is worth. They will be faced with the task of finding someone to perform a business appraisal or valuation. Since this is unfamiliar territory, the owners often make some big mistakes.

Mistake #1 – Automatically Hiring Your Existing CPA Firm

Business owners often assume that all CPAs are competent in business valuation. In fact, many CPAs have very little or no business valuation experience or training. Don’t expect your CPA firm to tell you if they are not proficient in this area. Firms are often reluctant to; turn down additional revenue, admit their lack of expertise, and refer you to a competitor.

Ask your CPA firm if they have any staff that are credentialed and experienced in business valuation. Then get an anonymous list of their prior business valuations by business size and type. Don’t be too concerned if they have not valued a company in your same industry. Regular and recent business valuation experience is much more important. If they don’t have adequate business valuation experience, ask if they would recommend a firm that does.

Mistake #2 – Automatically Hiring a Referred Professional

Referrals mean different things to different people, so you must ask on what basis it is being given. If it based on a brief meeting at a networking event, then don’t give it much weight. Referrals based on reputation alone are only slightly better. Seek referrals based on first-hand dealings with the referred professional. All referrals, even high quality ones, need to be evaluated further to determine their business valuation competence.

Mistake #3 – Using Rule of Thumb Formulas

Many business owners believe there is some secret formula that can be used to accurately value their business. There are many rules of thumb and they are not a secret. Rules of thumb can be useful to get a “quick and dirty” estimate, but they have some serious flaws. No one really knows the quality and the quantity of the data on which they are based. The formulas typically use multiples that are expressed in ranges (like 1 to 2 times annual sales) that result in widely varying values. The formulas provide no guidance on how to select an appropriate number within that range. Most importantly, these formulas do not account for the unique characteristics and factors that affect the value of a specific business. If a business valuation will be given to third parties or subject to dispute, rule of thumb formulas just won’t stand up to the scrutiny.

Mistake #4 – Paying Too Little

Business valuations typically cost thousands of dollars. In an attempt to save money business owners often look to get one on the cheap. There are a number of sources on the Internet that will value a business for substantially less cost. The old adage – you get what you pay for – applies here. These services use various formulas, proprietary data, checklists, and etc. to arrive at an estimate. Some even come with rather impressive looking reports. In general, these services are just high-priced, dressed-up rule of thumb formulas.

Mistake # 5 – Paying Too Much

Business valuation firms often set minimum fees and limit the levels of service without regard to the cost restraints of smaller companies. By omitting some valuation procedures that typically aren’t relevant to smaller businesses and preparing summary-style reports, firms can legitimately and significantly reduce the cost of a business valuation. A high cost, full scope business valuation is often overkill for a small businesses. Look for a firm that can match your needs more closely to save money. Fees can vary greatly so it pays to shop around. Seek the best professional for the best price, not necessarily the lowest price.

By taking the time to do some basic research business owners can avoid these mistakes, hire a competent business valuation professional, and get the most value for their money.

Copyright 2005 David Coffman

The number of people who get interested in buy ejuice increases every day.

Home Based Business Financing Guide

Well, the good news is there are several resources available to finance your home based business. You’ll have to do some research to find what’s available in your area, but this guide will show you several areas to begin looking to get the financing you need for your home based business.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) is an excellent place to turn to for home based business financing. It doesn’t make grants that your home based business won’t have to pay back, nor does it make direct loans to small and home based businesses. Instead, the SBA guarantees loans given by private lenders. This reduces the risk associated with new business ventures and makes it easier to get lenders for your home based business. However, to get a SBA loan, your home based business must be a profit making one, and you will have to guarantee your loan personally. This means putting your personal assets at risk. Also, to be eligible for an SBA assistance and/or loan, your home based business has to be in the United States, and there’s other criteria that must be met. Still, if you’re looking for financial assistance to start your home based business, the SBA is a good place to start.

Private grants are another type of financing you can look into for your home based business. There are many different types of grants, and there could likely be one for your home based business. The Internet is a great place to do your research. The grant process can take awhile, so if you decide this is the route you want to go for financing your home business, and your home based business meets the criteria of a grant, you will want to get started with the grant writing process as soon as possible. Also, you may need to hire a grant writer to help you. Grant requirements are strenuous, and there’s a great deal of competition for small and home based business grants. It’s well worth the time and effort to research grants, though, to try to get a grant for your home based business because the money given does not have to be paid back.

Another type of home based business financing is through what’s called angel investors. These are investors who are willing to lend money to fledgling small and home based businesses, generally because they know a good thing when they see it and are willing to take some risks. Angel investors for home based businesses may not be that easy to find, but with some networking in your area, you’ll be able to locate several. Joining your local Chamber of Commerce is a good way to find angel investors. Also, talk to accountants who may be able to bring together several investors for your home based business. This happens a lot more often than you might think because investing in a small or home based business can provide a good tax break for many people. And then there are just some good souls out there who want to help others start home based businesses because they’ve been there themselves and managed to create successful home based businesses of their own.

One final note. The only investors to be wary of for your home based business are those you might find in your own family. It just simply isn’t a good idea to borrow money for your home based business, or for anything else for that matter, from family members. There are just too many things that can go wrong in a financial obligation like this. A family member you borrow money from to start your home based business may pressure you to run the business their way, or worse, your home based business could go under and have to declare bankruptcy. It’s horrible to lose any investor’s money, but when it’s Uncle David’s, it’s much worse. So only borrow money for your home based business from family members as a last resort, and only if you’re certain you have a sure thing.

Charles Fuchs

http://www.charlesfuchs.com

http://charlesfuchs.blogspot.com

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Business Plans Keep You On The Success Course

Where would your business be without a proper plan? A
business plan sets the direction for the future of the
business. It gives the business owner or manager a sense
of guidance, listing the goals and objectives of the
business from the start.

Writing a business plan requires your attention; a
successful business plan cannot be rushed. Once a
concept for a business has been developed, looking at
the many facets of owning and operating your business
is the next most crucial step. Often, your local county
council will be able to assist you with gathering the
required information of a legal aspect, as should your
local business enterprise people. The balance of the
work will be up to you! You will need to research
products for your business to sell, at the same time as
researching other enterprises that may be in immediate
competition to you. In addition, you need to research
the marketplace to see whether there is a need for your
business service or product.

With the research out of the way, sitting down to write
a business plan requires focus. Your business plan will
become the bible of your business for at least the next
3 to 5 years so it is important to make it clear, concise
and comprehensive. Most enterprises will complete a
SWOT
analysis to determine their strengths, weaknesses,
opportunities and threats of the business. While the
business is in infancy, brainstorming would be the most
accurate way of performing the analysis, as the business
would not yet have customers and profitability would not
yet have been experienced. However, it is very important
to remember that a good business plan is flexible and can
be changed as your business experiences grow.

After completing a SWOT analysis, you will need to
create your business name if it has not already been
determined, as well as your vision and values, your
business goals and long term purpose and how you will
achieve all of this when the business is up and running.
Writing each thought down regardless of how insignicant
you
feel it is will allow you to collect everything pertinent
to your business for easy reference when needed. Who
knows,
the thought of today may turn into a million dollars in a
short time! A business plan is the roadmap to a successful
business!

Don’t let the small stuff get in your way of taking
control of your future. Remember – It’s All Small Stuff!