Prospective business buyers often don’t know where to start when interviewing a business seller.  These 4 questions will assist any buyer in better understanding the business they are investigating and the business seller himself.  I would like to thank Dr. John Hayes as he introduced me to these questions in the article “Buy A Franchise With Confidence Using These 4 Questions” Click here to read.

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Number 1;  As an existing business owner, knowing what you now know, would you buy or build this business again?  Remember to ask follow-up, what, where, and why, type questions to get to the heart of the matter.   If the owner would not build the business again ask what would have to change for them to feel differently.

Number 2;  Do you find the business as satisfying today as you did when you first got started?  You can’t overrate satisfaction and contentment.

Number 3;  What is the secret to the success of top performers in this industry?  Clearly, have some level of reservation about the answer if the seller is not in the top 50% performance wise.

Number 4;  If I invest my money, and run the business as you have, how much money should I make in the first year?  Third year?  Fifth year?

When buying a business, use these four questions to understand the business, the seller, and the industry the business is in.  Have a great conversation and learn all you can.