For many, buying a business is a lifelong dream. And while this can be an incredibly exciting time, it is also a time that requires careful planning and the need to cultivate a complete understanding of the legal requirements of a successful purchase. When purchasing any business you must proceed through four very important steps which, if not properly navigated, could easily fall through, leaving you disappointed. Hence, why it is highly recommended you engage the services of a solicitor who specialises in the purchase of businesses.
Once you have completed the process of negotiating the terms of the purchase of the business, it will be time to put those terms into contract form. This stage is critical because oftentimes this is where small misunderstandings and miscommunications reveal themselves. In addition, this is the stage where any forgotten details can still be reviewed and included. It is imperative you complete the following steps:
After having carefully read the contract, it is time to review those areas that need to be discussed and possibly negotiated. This is your opportunity to clarify and change any details that may have been overlooked during the larger negotiation process. These specifics can include;
At this stage, you will need to determine if you will be taking over the current lease or entering into a new lease. Either instance will require that you review the lease document you will be signing. It is important to review all of the lease details including;
After having carefully negotiated and memorialised your agreement, it is time to sign your contract. You will do this in the presence of your solicitor to allow you to review the final document and ask any last-minute questions before signing. Once you have signed the contract will be forwarded to the other party for the same final review process. After all signatures have been affixed the sale is final and the last step of implementing the contract can begin.
The settlement will then proceed over the next few weeks. During the settlement process you will be instructed to;
While this may seem like a daunting process, it does not have to be. If you begin the process with a full understanding of the steps that must be completed for a successful purchase and surround yourself with those who have an expertise in the area of the sale and purchase of a business, you will find that the process can go very smoothly.
Rolf Howard, Managing Partner, Owen Hodge Lawyers