You might not realize it, but the independently owned restaurant is still alive and well.  While the dining industry may seem to be dominated by a handful of fast food giants, there are still many independently owned restaurants that are thriving and serving millions of people every day.  In the restaurant business, one can make a good deal of money, as mark ups tend to be quite high.  If you are lucky enough to find a restaurant for sale that is well liked and well trafficked, you could be in for a real treat that has nothing to do with food!  Likewise, if you have a great restaurant for sale, you should have no problem finding a buyer if you have a thriving business.

 

Profitability

 

If you are considering any business for sale, it only makes sense to evaluate whether or not it is profitable.  If all you ever hear is that the business has “potential,” you probably want to head in the other direction if you are a buyer.  Potential is great, but when its coupled with a track record of established earnings!  There is nothing magical about the restaurant industry, and it’s important to keep this in mind when you see owners looking to sell a restaurant.  A restaurant needs to be profitable like any other business for sale.

 

If you are selling a restaurant, be prepared that you will be asked about the profitability of your business.  These types of questions are asked across the board when it comes to businesses for sale.  If your business isn’t currently making much money, you need to be prepared to sell it for a lower rate.

 

Long Term Potential

 

Seeing a restaurant for sale sign might be an exciting moment, but it is also important to step back and evaluate the long-term potential of any restaurants for sale that you come across.  As a buyer, you need to make certain that your clientele will not suddenly dry up and vanish due to circumstances beyond your control.  This can be tricky but if you ask the right questions and investigate the area in which the restaurant is located you will be giving yourself a real leg up. Don’t hesitate to ask questions that will inform you about a restaurant’s reputation as well.

 

If you are planning to sell a restaurant and your business has reputation issues, see if there is anything you can do in advance to repair these problems.  Also the cleanliness of your restaurant goes hand in hand with its reputation.  Make sure that you have past inspections and have the proper licenses.

 

Additional Advice for Buyers

 

When either buying or selling a restaurant, it is very important to use a Professional. A Business Broker can help both Sellers and Buyers navigate through the process.