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Ask Dave

Buy Family Small Business?

Dave tells Eric to make sure that the family he works for is ready to sell their small business to him.

QUESTION: Eric works for a stable family company and has a chance to be a full-time owner. How would he go about buying the owners out?

ANSWER: Start by making sure that the owners are willing to sell.  From the sound of your story, the owners might not be ready and the last thing you want is to offend.  Also keep in my mind I'm very wary of going into business with friends or family.  It's a great way to sour relationships and make for some very akward Thanksgivings!