How much is enough when selling your business?

Thinking of selling your business?  How much is enough?

Deciding to sell your business is an exciting milestone, but it can come with some questions and challenges too.

One of these might be the question of how much you will consider selling your business for? Take to Google and you will find multiple different ways to calculate how much your business could be worth to a buyer.

While it is important to be objective about how much you can expect to be selling your business for, there is another important number to take into consideration: how much is “enough” to fund your next chapter?

Read on to discover why it is so crucial to understand how much you will need to fund your personal goals when selling your business.

Understanding how much is “enough” could influence how and when you embark on your next career move

When you know how much you will need to be able to achieve your goals – whether you’re planning to retire or take on a new business challenge – you can make sensible decisions when selling your company.

An example can help to demonstrate why this is the case.

Two business owners, named Lee and Mary, are ready to sell their respective businesses and retire. Each of them is offered £1 million for their business by a buyer.

Mary has consulted a financial planner who explained that, to achieve her desired lifestyle in retirement, £1 million is enough. She confidently accepts the offer and retires.

Lee, however, has not spoken to a planner. Even though £1 million would be enough for him to retire, he thinks he may need more. He rejects the offer, deciding to hold out for a higher one. By the time he receives the offer he wanted, he has had to work for a further 10 years, retiring far later than he planned and in worse health.

As you can see, it’s not just about what you feel your business is worth – perhaps more important is understanding what you need for your own goals. Without this understanding, you might end up working for longer than necessary, delaying your next chapter, or retiring without sufficient savings.

Selling your business – how much is “enough” is unique to you

The proceeds from selling your business need to be sufficient to fund your next steps. So, how do you calculate the figure needed to feel confident in accepting an offer?

Your financial planner can help you to do this using cashflow forecasting. A cashflow forecast is a visualisation of the total value of your assets and debts over the course of your life, alongside your predicted expenses.

Your planner uses specialised software and enters data about your existing assets, income, and liabilities, as well as your expenses and key dates such as when you wish to retire.

They also enter some assumptions about investment growth and inflation to see how this could affect your net worth. Finally, they will enter data about how much annual income you are likely to need in retirement to fund the lifestyle you are hoping for.

The resulting forecast can indicate how your assets could grow over time, and model different scenarios to see how they affect your finances. For example, they could discover how different selling prices might affect your ability to meet the required expenses for your retirement goals.

This data can give you the confidence to accept an offer that will enable you to retire or start your next career move sooner rather than later.

You can review your cashflow forecast regularly with your planner to ensure you are still on the right track, and so that you can tweak your plan if your circumstances or goals change. In addition, your planner can help you manage your finances after the sale so that you can ensure the funds will last as long as needed without compromising your ability to achieve your goals.

Thinking of selling your business, get in touch

If you want to sell your business, we can support you in ensuring the sale enables you to achieve your long-term professional and personal goals. Once you have achieved the “right” price and sold your business, it is vital to manage your finances sensibly so that the proceeds enable you to live your desired lifestyle. To arrange an initial meeting with no obligation, please contact us at or call 020 7870 9050 to speak to us. Or you can visit our web chat in the bottom right corner, which we respond to personally during office hours and you can leave a message out of hours.

The RPGCC team is always just a click or call away contact our Financial Services team on 020 7870 9050.



Please note – The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate cashflow planning.  This article is no substitute for financial advice and should not be treated as such. To determine the best course of action for your individual circumstances, please contact us.

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