What to Watch for When Buying a Business

There are tons of articles about selling a business. What if you’re buying a business? Here are a few quick suggestions to keep you on the right path.

Needless to say, it’s one of the reasons you’re here and reading this. You need to know the value of what you’re buying and whether you’re paying a reasonable price. Find an expert certified in valuation who can help you. More on this here and here. The language of valuation starts with…

Many sellers are maximizing tax deductions instead of profits. Many sellers also have terrible bookkeeping. More on this here. What key accounting metric should you be looking for? Simply stated…

The business should be generating cash flow and it should be consistent. If it isn’t, should you walk away? Maybe not. Find out why. There are two other elements that will make or break a business and often outweigh everything else…

People and Culture
Good people can take a business to unimaginable heights. One bad person can wreck the entire business. Find out what kind of people and culture you’re considering buying…before you buy it. More on this here

The Bottom Line
It can feel a little lonely if you’re thinking about buying a business. Professionals tend to beat a path to sellers, possibly thinking they’ll get a piece of the deal. If you’re buying a business, review these suggestions, take your time, and please ask for help. I’m here if you want to talk.


Sign up for this blog here if you want tools to increase the value of your business or want a refreshing view on business valuation from a recovering CPA. I’m Josh Horn, CPA, CVA of Horn Valuation. I value businesses for owner exits with a focus on HVAC and trade contractors. I also assist litigation and divorce attorneys as a business valuation consulting or testifying expert. My clients are business owners and attorneys. If you’d like more information, email me at [email protected], or call me at 217-649-8794.

I’m a licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and credentialed in business valuation (CVA). I’ve been a tax and business consultant in a top 100 CPA firm and a controller in a large international company. I’ve also valued and advised small family-owned and multimillion-dollar companies. You can connect with me here on LinkedInFacebookTwitter, YouTube and Instagram.

“Once-in-a-lifetime events demand an expert.”
 Josh Horn, CPA and Certified Valuation Analyst