What our terms and conditions say and why we do more

As a business broker we work with both the buyer and the seller. We are not an agent who works for only one side. Our aim is to help the vendor get more than one offer so that they can have a choice. We also aim to help all buyers put their best offer forward. If a buyer has not bought before we are often asked to guide them through how to put in an offer.

It is the buyer that pays our fee. In the terms and conditions signed by the buyer we state our fee is based on the introduction of fees. So, we get paid by the buyer for purely introducing the buyer to the vendor, provided of course that the deal goes through to completion.

I know, from talking to buyers that buy from us regularly, that other brokers also provide the service of introducing fees. The buyer is given the name and phone number of a vendor and asked to make contact with them. It is then up to the buyer to make the phone call to set up the initial meeting. One buyer said he can have a meeting with a vendor and not hear back from the broker for weeks on end.

How we differ:-
• We will ask the vendor to set aside a day in their diary to meet with potential buyers.
• The vendor will, normally, book a meeting room in a hotel for the meeting day.
• We will send out a mailer to all potential buyers in the area prescribed by the vendor.
• Any firms to be excluded will not be contacted.
• Any firms to be included will be.
• All responses to the mailer are fielded by our office.
• Our terms and conditions are sent to the potential buyer and are signed.
• They state everything given is to remain confidential and the buyer pays our fee.
• Once this paperwork has been received the Report is sent to the buyer.
• This is usually a 20+ page report about the practice for sale.
• If the buyer wants to book a meeting with the vendor at the meeting day that is arranged by the office.
• The vendor has a phone appointment (normally lasts an hour) to run through how to get the most out of the meetings.
• The vendor will be informed of:-
o What the current multiple is for their size of practice.
o The different ways in which the fees could be bought by the buyer.
o The time frame for putting in an offer.
o Time frame for completion.
o How to start the meeting, run the meeting and finish the meeting.
• Most vendors have not sold before and this preparation makes them far more confident when meeting with buyers.
• We ask for feedback from the meetings at the meeting day from both the vendor and the buyer, within a couple of days.
• This is passed back to the respective parties.
• Offers are sent to us from buyers, within the time scale agreed, to review and then forwarded to the vendor.
• The vendor will decide which offer to accept and it is up to us to let the parties know which one has been successful and which ones have not.
• Depending on the size of the practice being sold, the time taken between having an offer and accepting an offer can vary between a day and several months.
• We do not count the number of times the vendor and or the buyer contacts us for help and advice.
• Once the offer is accepted by one buyer the due diligence starts.
• We are on hand to help with any questions or queries.
• We do not deal with legal matters but can recommend a good solicitor if needed.
• We track progress right through until completion.

There are many reasons why we do so much more than just introducing the fees. We work closely with the buyer and the seller to help facilitate the deal. This means that both parties are more likely to get what they want from the deal. The time frame is reduced. There are fewer chances for things go awry. The buyer buys the fees quicker, the seller sells quicker and we get paid quicker. Win win win, what could be better?

If you want to sell or buy, talk to us. We have lots of experience with selling and buying accountancy practices. We know what we are talking about, contact me, Nicola Draper on 01788 816440 or email me at n.draper@draperhinks.co.uk.

Please remember everything discussed will be kept in the strictest of confidence.