In some ways, selling a home-based business can be a lot easier than unloading a corporation, for example. For one thing, you lack the overhead that many business owners have to deal with. And since you are likely the sole proprietor you’re the only one who has to agree to terms and sign the paperwork, meaning that a sale can be relatively quick and painless. Of course, there are also difficulties that may not exist in a corporate structure. Corporations often have bookkeepers, accountants, and other positions in place to manage records. Your company history, on the other hand, could be a little spotty as an individual working from home. Still, there are many reasons why home-based businesses are rather attractive during a recession (or at any time, really), revolving mainly around low overhead, a book of clients, and the ease of transition of operations. But if you want to get the most money possible for your home-based business there are a few steps you’ll need to take to get everything in ship shape for a sale.

  1. Organize. If you haven’t exactly been the neatest record-keeper, now is the time to get your affairs in order. Any person or entity you pass your business along to is going to need access to your history of operations, and this includes tax records, fiscal information, client-related data, and so on. So you’re going to have to get files and paperwork organized in order to attract potential buyers and prepare them to take the reins.
  2. Optimize. The vast majority of home-based businesses operate in the online arena, at least to some degree. But if you want to make your business even more appealing, optimization is a great way to increase value. When you have a strategy in place to increase awareness, traffic, and sales you’ll have a much better chance of attracting buyers and getting the money you seek in exchange for your home-based business.
  3. Compare and contrast. It’s important to know what you’re up against before you try to sell, not only so that you have a good idea of how to price your business, but also so that you can assess exactly what you have to offer that competitors lack. Part of getting the best price for your company is proving that it fills a niche and that it has a future. And the best way to do this is to figure out what makes your business unique and desirable to interested buyers.
  4. Time it right. Most businesses go through cycles, which is to say there are certain times when business increases and certain times when it wanes. For example, retail businesses are often busier and more profitable before and during the winter holiday season, but sales may drop off during the first couple months of the year. The best time to sell is when you’re busy and turning a decent profit, rather than when you’re in a slump.
  5. Get help from a pro. Suppose you had a legal settlement you wanted instant cash for. You wouldn’t go for the first “sell my settlement” website you stumbled across; you’d likely retain the services of a lawyer or other professional to guide you through the process in order to ensure the best possible settlement compensation. The same is true of selling your home-based business. Although you’ll have to pay a professional you help you through the sale, it could mean less hassle and more money in your pocket in the long run.

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