What are the most demanding Restaurants to Sell
The most demanding restaurants to sell fall into three categories. Chef-driven restaurants, BBQ restaurants, and unprofitable restaurants or new openings. All three types of restaurants present considerable challenges when it’s time to sell a restaurant.
The cold hard fact is that only 30%-40% of restaurants listed for sale will sell to a new buyer. Some restaurant concepts are much easier to sell than others, depending on the skill level required.
Restaurant owners can improve their chances of selling if they understand the obstacles they will face while selling a restaurant.
Texas Restaurant Broker Dominique Maddox says, “ when a buyer is thinking about purchasing a restaurant for sale, they should think about an exit strategy. Concepts like pizza restaurants, sub sandwich restaurants, or ice cream concepts have a large ready, able, willing buyer pool looking to buy.
Restaurant Broker list of challenges to selling a restaurant in each concept:
Cons: Chef-Driven Restaurants: Are usually started by a trained Chef
-The majority of restaurant buyers looking to purchase are not trained, Chefs
-The restaurant is usually branded with Chef’s name and goodwill
-Some locations don’t have a trained Sous Chef
-The consistency of the food can be a problem
-Most will not have recipes documented
Cons: BBQ Restaurants:
–The skill level required to produce an excellent product can be high
-Some cultures don’t eat pork products, so they would not be interested in buying a BBQ restaurant
– Everybody does not want to be a pit master
-Time required to cook meats
– Most will not have recipes documented unless it’s a franchise
Unprofitable restaurants or new openings- The most common phrase from Restaurant Owners is, “I just want my buildout cost or original investment back” it sounds good, but it’s not that simple.
Cons: Unprofitable Restaurants
-Not making money-buyers mainly want profitable restaurants
-Can be considered risky
-Buyers are more cautious when buying restaurants that are not profitable
-Most times, limited books and records are provided
-The new buyer will assume lease obligations
-Buyer is purchasing used equipment and leasehold improvements
Cons: New Buildout-open less than one year (Seller usually doesn’t get original build-out cost back when selling)
-Tenant is usually responsible for obtaining a Certificate of Occupancy (CO)
-Many restaurant owners go over the original buildout cost
-Can take an extended time to open depending on supply and demand for supplies and contractors
-The “unknown” cost associated with a new buildout
-Tenants can be responsible for the following build cost before opening the doors
Installing a Hood System
Installing a Grease Trap
Installing new plumbing
Building out bathrooms
Building outside seating
Installing walk-in coolers
-First, all Restaurant Sellers should understand that the landlord owns all leasehold improvements that are fixtures.
-Restaurant Valuations for new build-out locations is a challenge for a Restaurant Broker
**These restaurant segments were chosen from past experiences after 11 years of being a Restaurant Broker and specializing in selling restaurants only.**
For more information on the restaurant market and other available consulting services or complimentary restaurant valuations, contact Dominique Maddox at 404-993-4448 or email at email@example.com. Visit our website at www.EATSbroker.com.Read More
Restaurant Sellers vs. Restaurant Buyers-Different Mindsets
Restaurant Sellers vs. Restaurant Buyers have different mindsets when it involves buying or selling a restaurant. When a restaurant owner decides to sell a restaurant, the primary goals are to get the highest sales price, highest net proceeds, remove the lease as a guarantor, and close quickly.
A restaurant buyer’s focus differs slightly from the sellers and is directly focused on the terms, conditions, and stipulations on an Asset Purchase Agreement.
An asset purchase agreement between a buyer and a seller explains the terms and conditions related to purchasing and selling a restaurant‘s assets. The Asset Purchase Agreement will automatically satisfy the restaurant owner’s needs when filled out correctly. The agreement will document the listing price and closing date.
The restaurant buyer needs to confirm that they are comfortable with the conditions and terms of an Asset Purchase Agreement before signing and setting up an escrow account. The escrow deposit is a good faith deposit that can range from $10,000-$50,000. The buyer’s deposit is protected by the stipulations documented in the purchase agreement.
Dallas Restaurant Broker Dominique Maddox says, “restaurant buyers should make sure they have a trained Restaurant Broker prepare an Asset Purchase Agreement on their behalf. A Restaurant Broker knows the stipulations to add that give the buyer’s escrow deposit the most protection.”
EATS Broker has encountered several buyers that have lost their escrow deposit because they had an untrained Restaurant Broker prepare an agreement for them.
A restaurant buyer should make sure to cover the basics of a Purchase Agreement:
- Due Diligence Period
- Landlord Approval Stipulation
- Bank Lending Approval-if lending is needed
- Escrow Deposit Amount
- All UCC liens should be removed from Equipment
- Sales Tax Clearance letter supplied by the seller before the closing date
- All Equipment should be in working order
- Franchisor Approval stipulation-if restaurant is a franchise for sale
- Who pays for the Transfer Fee?
- Who pays for restaurant remodels if required by franchise?
- Closing attorney contact information
- Restaurant Equipment included in the sale
- Inventory- paid outside of purchase price or included in offer price
For more information on the restaurant market and other available consulting services or restaurant valuations, contact Restaurant Broker Dominique Maddox at 404-993-4448 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit our website at www.EATSbroker.comRead More
Selling a Restaurant-Mistakes to Avoid
If you are selling a restaurant, there are mistakes to avoid that can become obstacles to reaching the closing table. To increase the odds of a restaurant for sale getting to the closing table, the Asset Sale Purchase agreement needs to be adequately prepared by a trained professional.
The sales price is only the start of a complex negotiating process that the small details are a BIG determining factor for success. The restaurant resale process negotiations include language that must be agreed upon by both restaurant seller and restaurant buyer.
Once the price has been agreed upon, the knots and bolts of the deal still need to be finalized. Most are not familiar with the critical items that should be addressed in a purchase agreement.
EATS Restaurant Brokers are Restaurant Resale Specialist that understands the critical items on the Asset Purchase Agreement that need to be negotiated upfront between both parties. This blog will cover the essential details that should be addressed in an Asset Purchase Agreement.
Texas Restaurant Broker Dominique Maddox says, “We have a high closing rate because, after ten years as a Restaurant Broker, I have extensive training in restaurant sales negotiations. I understand the critical details to address upfront.
We recently moved our headquarters to Dallas, Texas; we are excited about helping restaurant owners in Texas to avoid mistakes that stop them from selling a restaurant and getting paid at the closing table”.
EATS Restaurant Brokers Top Mistakes to Avoid
Equipment List: The equipment list is usually an itemized list of restaurant equipment and decorations included in the restaurant sale. The list is created by the restaurant owner and provided to the interested buying parties.
The equipment list is an essential part of the restaurant valuation, Asset Purchase Agreement, and assets a buyer will receive. Buyers should understand that fixtures attached to the building belong to the landlord and not the tenant.
Grease trap, hood system, walk-in cooler, walk-in freezer, water sink, and built-in bar should not be included on an equipment list. When an Asset Purchase Agreement is fully executed, it contains a list of equipment that will transfer ownership.
Mistakes to Avoid: Check items on the equipment list to confirm ownership. Restaurant equipment is commonly rented (mainly dishwasher); a restaurant owner can’t sell something they don’t own. Read the lease to ensure the landlord does not own the equipment and the current tenant didn’t lease a fully equipped restaurant space.
Fees: Who Covers them?
Who pays the attorney fees and why? In residential real estate, it’s common for both parties to split closing attorney fees in residential real estate, or the Seller will sometimes pay the fees.
Restaurant Brokerage is different; it’s the buyer’s cost and responsibility. It’s beneficial for a restaurant buyer to pick and pay a closing attorney that understands business brokerage. A closing attorney is not needed to close a simple deal if a deal does not involve bank lending or franchise ownership transfer.
Mistake to Avoid– Choose a closing attorney that charges a flat rate compared to an hourly rate. Confirm the services the attorney will provide for the agreed price. Do not use a closing attorney that is not familiar with UCC lien searches or business brokerage deals. Always use a closing attorney for a restaurant sales transaction.
The inventory on hand on the day of closing belongs to the buyer, but actually, they need to pay the restaurant owner first. Several buyers have a misunderstanding that the food inventory is included in the purchase price.
This understanding is far from the truth unless clarified at the beginning of the negotiations. The standard process is that an inventory count is complete the night before closing or the morning of closing. The buyer will pay inventory costs for the food items or other inventory.
Buyer and Seller take inventory together, and the buyer pays a separate check for the final sum. Occasionally a Restaurant Broker will put an estimated number on the Asset Purchase Agreement (for example, $5000). Once the inventory count is final, both parties will finalize the underpayment or overpayment for inventory.
Mistake to Avoid– Confirm restaurant owner will have a copy of recent inventory delivery invoices with current prices. I would suggest not paying for items that are almost gone.
A transfer fee is required when reselling a franchise restaurant for sale. The current restaurant owner has already agreed to this fee on the franchise on the Franchise Disclosure Document(FDD).
The transfer fee will cover the buyer’s required training, ranging from 2-10 weeks, depending on the franchise. The transfer fee does not directly go to the restaurant seller; buyers are expected to pay the transfer fee. This fee can range from $5,000-$50,000.
Mistake to Avoid– Confirm Transfer fee upfront and put language in the Asset Purchase Agreement for the party responsible for payment.
Want more help selling a restaurant? Contact Restaurant Broker Dominique Maddox at 404-993-4448 or by email at email@example.com. Visit our website at www.EATSbroker.comRead More
10 Reasons for selling a restaurant
Reasons for selling a restaurant can differ from restaurant owner to owner. Everyone has a specific reason that they want to sell a restaurant.
EATS Restaurant Brokers list of Top 10 reasons for selling a restaurant:
Retirement– The baby boomers are ready to retire and enjoy the last chapter of their life in peace without the stress of restaurant ownership. The Covid-19 pandemic and worker shortage have baby boomers listing restaurants for sale faster than in the past.
Failing Restaurant– 60% of restaurants will fail within three years after opening the doors. 80% will close the doors permanently within five years of opening up for business. Restaurant ownership is a rewarding but demanding business to survive in for multiple years.
Lack of Capital- The restaurant business is all about the numbers and ratios to total sales. Many restaurant owners have to use personal capital to keep a restaurant operating. Liquid capital can quickly disappear from bank accounts when it comes to restaurant ownership; money is one of the most significant driving factors for restaurant owners to sell a restaurant.
Burnout– The restaurant industry is a lifestyle that most people cannot handle over an extended time. Restaurant owners can be asked to work 10-12 hour shifts and always be on call for problems.
Divorce- Several restaurants for sale on the buyer market are due to parties getting divorced.
Illness- To be successful in the restaurant industry, you need to stay healthy and active. The restaurant hospitality industry is for the strong mentally and physically and, individuals can endure long hours and stressful situations. Illness is a significant factor in the decision-making when it’s time to sell a restaurant.
Family – Time with the family or lack of time with the family is a big motivator to sell a restaurant. The kids grow up fast, the babies start walking before you know it, the time at night before bed with your soulmate means the world to most.
Bored-Depending on the type of restaurant owned, some restaurants have lots of downtown during non-peak hours. Restaurant owners whose sales are low and can’t attract customers can get bored with restaurant ownership.
Overwhelmed-Restaurant owners have to wear multiple hats when owning a restaurant. One minute they can be ordering inventory, next minute dealing with a busted leak in the ceiling, POS machine not working, and workers are calling out for work. Juggling multiple tasks and responsibilities can be overwhelming to even an experienced restauranteur.
Stress- The restaurant industry is notorious for sending people to the hospital. The stress related to the long hours, the bills adding up, labor work shortage, can lead to health-related stress issues for many individuals.
Additional Issues outside of Top 10 list:
All equity tied up in restaurant assets
The restaurant business is too risky
Want to focus on other business or core business
Outside factors (political/economic)
To raise capital/funds for another business
For more information on the restaurant market and other available consulting services or restaurant valuations, contact Restaurant Broker Dominique Maddox at 404-993-4448 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit our website at www.EATSbroker.com
Restaurant Seller and Buyer Meeting: Tips for Success
EATS Restaurant Brokers decided to create a Restaurant Seller and Buyer Meeting-Tips for Success checklist. The initial meeting between the buyer and a seller can dictate how the working relationship will be in the future.
The goal of the initial meeting is to familiarize both Restaurant Seller and Restaurant Buyer, view the back of the house, buyers get an opportunity to ask probing questions and review restaurant financials. The most straightforward deals are when the buyer and seller like and respect each other. When the personalities don’t mix, the restaurant closing process could be filled with turbulence.
Dominique Maddox of EATS Restaurant Brokers says, “ The best method to minimize differences in personalities is to keep the deal flow managed by a specialized trained Restaurant Broker. When Restaurant Sellers and Buyers communicate directly without a skilled Restaurant Broker, a deal can crumble quickly”.
EATS Restaurant Brokers 7 Tips for a Successful Seller and Buyer meeting.
- Buyer and seller should both have face masks on, even if social distancing is done.
- Walk around the restaurant to get the seller talking and to get the buyer more comfortable. Great way to break the ice between parties.
- We recommended starting with the back of the house (BOH) to show the kitchen area and cooking equipment. This task can range in time depending on the size of the restaurant and restaurant owner explaining items.
- Sit down for a meeting- This is a great time to introduce each party to start talking about why one party wants to sell and the buying party to explain the interest in buying.
- The sit-down meeting allows the buyer to ask questions about the restaurant operations, restaurant equipment, lease, employees, financials, and willingness to negotiate on price.
- Restaurant sellers should be prepared to explain the Cost of Goods (COGS), Labor, Sales, and potential to increase sales.
- Buyer should review financials before meeting with the seller. The buyer should come to the meeting with prepared questions to ask the seller.
- Follow-up questions after the meeting should be directed to Restaurant Broker to share with the seller.
For more information on the restaurant market and other available consulting services or a complimentary restaurant valuation, contact Dominique Maddox at 404-993-4448 or by email at email@example.com. Visit our website at www.EATSbroker.com.Read More
Selling a Restaurant: What Documentation is needed?
When selling a restaurant, what documentation is needed from the seller? The answer is simple it depends on what type of sales transaction. Trained Restaurant Brokers use two methods when providing a Restaurant Valuation to a seller.
The most profitable and best way to sell a restaurant is based on past Profit and Loss Statements and Tax Returns. If these documentations are not available, the restaurant should be priced as an Asset Sale, meaning pennies on the dollar for the equipment and build-out.
EATS Broker breaks down the essential documentation needed for both types of transactions. We list the documentation that is provided during the due diligence period for the buyer:
Selling a Restaurant Business Based on Tax Returns and Profit and Loss Statements:
– Tax Returns for the past three years
– Profit and Loss Statements for past three years
– Copy of Lease and all amendments
– Sales Tax Clearance Letter
– POS Sales Report
– Bank Statements (sometimes)
– Balance Sheet
– Copy of Franchise Royalty Report
– Equipment List (only items owned by the seller)
– Franchise Agreement
– Sales Tax History
Selling a Restaurant priced as an Asset Sale:
– Sales Tax Clearance Letter
– Copy of Lease and all amendments
– Equipment List
– Limited Profit and Loss information
– Sales Tax History (sometimes)
– Bank Statements (sometimes)
Providing documentation for a successful and profitable business net the seller the highest asking price, can qualify for a restaurant for bank lending and attracts more buyers. Asset Sale is harder to sell and makes the Restaurant Broker work for their commission.
Asset Sale can be a challenging sale because you sell the opportunity or potential to a new buyer. You can tell when a restaurant is listed as an Asset Sale because Cash Flow and EBITDA will be low or nonexistent.
EBITDA, or earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization, is a measure of a restaurant’s overall financial performance.
Dominique Maddox of EATS Restaurant Brokers says, “selling a restaurant business has two phases for a restaurant owner. First providing the documents needed for a valuation. Second, providing more detailed supporting documentation during the buyer’s due diligence period”.
Some restaurant owners can be frustrated and think they provided enough financial information during the valuation phase for buyers to confirm their numbers. This thinking is usually incorrect, and most buyers will ask and want to see more additional supporting documentation before arriving at the closing table.
For more information on the restaurant market and other available consulting services or a complimentary restaurant valuation, contact Dominique Maddox at 404-993-4448 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit our website at www.EATSbroker.comRead More