How to get the most money when selling your business - Hilton Smythe

The Hub

Selling a Business - Tips, Advice and Business News

How to get the most money when selling your business

You’ve grown your business over the years to be a success and the next step in selling. Selling your business is a major step for many business owners, however it can be a daunting and scary task. You obviously want to get the most out of selling your business, so here’s some tips on how to.

Plan Well Ahead

Planning ahead can really help you when you’re hoping to sell your business. For example if you’re selling your business due to ill health and need a quick sale, you’re more likely to agree on a lower price for a quick sale, therefore planning ahead can mean you won’t have to settle for a lower price.

To get the very best value for your business, you should look to start implementing some of the below steps 2 to 3 years prior to finally committing to selling your business.

Succession Planning

Succession Planning is a process in which the business can operate without your input, if the business relies on you to operate it’ll achieve less value at sale.

If your business does rely on you, you need to start delegating tasks, this way if you didn’t come into work, the business would still run to it’s full potential.

You should also have a look into your business processes to ensure they are cost effective, mapping out your processes can allow you to stop issues and make changes.

Three Years Accounts

Most buyers, if not all, will like to see the companies accounts to make sure the business lives up to the valuation. Make sure you have three solid years worth of accounts ready.

At Hilton Smythe we will only release accounts to buyers how have positively viewed the business.

Assess Your Cost Base

It is extremely important to assess your cost base, get rid of any costs which you don’t need, this will increase your bottom line profit, making the business more desirable.

Other factors such as staff numbers are essential; do you have too many staff? Extra costs that are unnecessary may put a potential buyer off the business.


Although not always appropriate for every business, wherever you supply to customers regularly or rely on a price from a supplier, ensure you have written contracts in place to protect the business. With this protection the business will instantly be more desirable.

Balance Sheet

Does your balance sheet reflect the business? Ensure any major assets (e.g. machinery or premises) are revalued, this will ensure you can get the best value for your business.

The valuation should be carried out by a professional and any findings should be reflected in the final accounts, or the reports should be made available to demonstrate to potential buyers the assets are worth what is stated in the accounts.

Stay on After the Sale

Are you prepared to stay on after the sale? some buyers may want you to stay on after the sale to handover the business. Businesses with a large turnover or small businesses where the seller has relationships with key suppliers/customers may benefit the buyer to fully understand the business.

Looking to sell your business?

Get a FREE Business Valuation from the UK’s leading expert in small to medium business sales

Speak to the team

    Feefo Gold Trusted Service Award

    Business Valuation Calculator

    Find out instantly what your business could be worth.

    Start Valuation

    Less than 1 minute to complete

    Answer a few simple questions

    Get your FREE instant valuation

    Start Valuation

    Our numbers speak for themselves. We don’t do second best and neither should you.


    More Completions


    More Offers


    More Viewings

    *Completions figure is comparable to K3 Capital PLC from 2017. Data based on our nearest competitor k3 Capital PLC, results in 2018 against comparable period.

    Speak to the team

      Feefo Gold Trusted Service Award