How to Ensure a Smooth Transaction When Selling Your CPA Practice

male hand handing stack of cash to woman with corporate building.

Owning a CPA practice is a very rewarding and lucrative career. However, at some point, it may be time for you to step aside. If this is the case, you need to start looking around for someone to buy you out. This process is full of potential pitfalls, but there are measures you need to take to make sure the transaction (and transition) goes smoothly. Here are 3 of them:

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Plan Early

This cannot be stressed enough. If you are nearing the time when you think you no longer want to be in business, get started early, looking for someone to take over. This allows you to be much more deliberate and take the time to vet your potential buyer properly. All too often, people find themselves needing to sell their Accounting practice faster than expected. This almost guarantees you will not get a good price and/or good terms on the sale.

Talk to Multiple Potential Buyers

When it comes to selling your CPA practice, it is easy to develop tunnel vision and look at one of your employees or perhaps a family member to sell to. These types of deals sometimes work out just fine, but there are many instances where, for whatever reason, they fall apart. It is best to always have a backup plan in case Plan A falls through. Keep an open mind and talk to several buyers. The more people you consider, the more likely you are to get a higher price for your practice.

Hire a Professional

To ensure that everything goes smoothly and all the angles are covered, it is a good idea to work with a professional. A business broker (particularly one that specializes in CPA or accounting practice sales) knows all the ‘ins’ and ‘outs’ of these transactions. They’ve dealt with common issues that often arise, and they know how to overcome them. They also know how to market your practice confidentially to a wide range of potential buyers, giving you the best possible exposure in the business marketplace.

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