Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is there a difference in using a Restaurant Broker rather than a real estate agent or general business broker?

A: Absolutely. The restaurant business is a very different model and requires the knowledge only a Restaurant Broker can bring. RESTAURANT BROKERS SELL RESTAURANTS, not dry cleaners, houses, muffler shops or any other business outside our area of expertise. Restaurant brokers are not a “Jack of all trades Master of none”, we are a Master of One and it’s that focus that works to your advantage.

Q: How long does it take to sell a restaurant?

A: We get this question most often and the truthful answer is somewhere between 3 to 10 months on average. There are so many factors in selling a restaurant that influence the timeline, some go very fast and I’ve seen some go out a year. There is no “Crystal Ball” however your chances of a successful sale improve substantially with the right Restaurant Broker representing your listing. Speak with your Restaurant Broker about your timeline and then allow them to suggest the correct strategy to attempt to meet. The right Restaurant Broker will always place what is best for you above commissions.

Q: Can I list my restaurant without revealing who we are?

A: Yes. Most listings are done with this level of confidentiality. All potential buyers are required to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement before the details are revealed. At the Restaurant Farm, we understand the damage that can be done to your open and operating business if employees and the general public are aware of your intent to sell. We take it very seriously and communicate with the potential buyer BEFORE we release the details. When your listing is posted to market it is a general description and not specific enough to identify. Yours may headline “Profitable Pizza restaurant in (Your town here) with growing sales”. If you are the only pizza place in your town we would reference the nearest larger city like “Profitable Pizza restaurant in North Name of big city here) suburb.

Q: Can I add “Off the Books” income to the valuation?

A: The short answer is no. You can only add back items you can clearly document with your P&L’s and Tax returns. If the business paid for your vehicle and the P&L’s reflect that category as “Auto” you are good. Those benefits that missed the books have already been reaped and cannot be harvested twice. On the other hand, let’s look at a different and real scenario where it has been added. Your manager has been a trusted right hand and witnessed the “Cover charge” cash collected. He/She decides to buy the business upon your offering to sell. The difference is verification and trust. Your Restaurant Broker will be dealing with buyers outside of your circle who (reasonably so) will only trust what you can verify. If you have a potential buyer within your inner circle we recommend you offer to them BEFORE engaging the services of a Restaurant Broker. Our “Sell it like a Broker” program can help with the closing documents.

Q: Are there any obligations having a conversation with a Restaurant Broker and

are those conversations kept confidential?

A: You are not obligated in anyway by having a discussion with a Restaurant Broker about selling your restaurant. At the Restaurant Farm we encourage a consultation call to help you decide if it is the right exit strategy for you. All conversations are bound by strict professional confidentiality which we take very seriously.

Selling restaurants is our business at the Restaurant Farm and we strive to be the best.
Please don’t hesitate to start a conversation with me about your goals.
You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the level of service my restaurant brokerage provides.
I guarantee it!

George Hilliard

Restaurant Broker/Founder

The Restaurant Farm