Call +1 (888) 995-9701

California's Largest Restaurant Brokerage - Specializing in Sales, Acquisitions & Leasing of Restaurants, Bars, Clubs & Related Commercial Buildings
CALL Toll-free +1 (888) 995-9701| BUYER Registration | SELLER Registration

Buying an Established Business

By in In The News

wsjby Sarah E. Needleman – July 31, 2011
(full article available on

Last year, Mark Shelstad set out to become his own boss after concluding that his portfolio-manager job had become unstable. But instead of trying to build a company from the ground up, the Chicago-area resident began searching for an existing one he could buy….

... “It’s a buyer’s market,” says Steven Zimmerman, president of Restaurant Realty, a business brokerage in Corte Madera, Calif.

While he acknowledges that some firms are priced lower today because they’re struggling to survive — and not just because the owner wants to retire or relocate — Mr. Zimmerman says such investments are still worth considering. “A buyer may be able to turn a problem into an opportunity,” he says….

… What’s the cost? Business brokers are typically hired by the seller so there is normally no cost to the buyer.

Do your homework. Before contacting brokers, determine the kind of business you’d like to buy. Research different industries and business types….

…Be honest. Let brokers know what you realistically can afford. “If you dance around finances, it’s a waste of everybody’s time,” says Scott Evert, president of Sunbelt Midwest, a business brokerage. Besides, brokers and sellers “are going to do due diligence on you anyway.”

Share This
About The Author
Steven Zimmerman, CBI, M&AMI, CBB, FIBBA

Steve is the Founder, Principal Broker and Chief Executive Officer of Restaurant Realty Company. Steve has personally sold/leased over 1,000 restaurant, bar and/or nightclub businesses and many related commercial buildings totaling 2+ million square feet of commercial space, collaborated with over 2,000 clients and completed over 3,000 valuations since 1996.His real estate experience also includes sales, acquisitions, management and ownership of numerous properties throughout California including restaurants, hotels, apartment buildings, single family houses, an office building and a multi-use retail building. Steve is also the author of Restaurant Dealmaker – An Insider’s Trade Secrets for Buying a Restaurant, Bar or Club available on Amazon. Prior to starting Restaurant Realty Company Steve had over 20 years of restaurant experience and was President and Chief Executive officer of Zim’s Restaurants, which was one of the largest privately owned restaurant chains in the San Francisco Bay Area. READ FULL BIO | HIRE EXPERT WITNESS - LEARN MORE