I have the opportunity to purchase a personal training business. In another state. It seems as if I would be purchasing some equipment, taking over a lease and have access to the original owners 50-60 clients. I would hope that at least half of those people would stick with me. The owner is currently running a profit (more than I make currently and I’m in a much larger city). I know you can never get the ‘full’ answer of why someone is selling but the business seems great and I’m not sure why the owner would be selling!
I’ve asked a zillion questions. Can you think of any other questions I should ask other than the obvious ones? Anything I should consider that perhaps I haven’t thought of already? I’ve asked about hours, transferring clientele, equipment maintenance, inventory lists, equipment lists, overhead costs, independent contractors, address, area, timeline, competition,advertising (does mostly free sessions to secure new clients but maintains a full schedule), landlord (is his client), rent, any legal issues with the business or building, no vandal, training style, why the owner is relocating, financing, how long he has been in business, size of studio, no classes.
I’m currently in corporate wellness and have a few private clients. I would love to relocate to this other state and I would love to be my own boss. My fiance works in banking however and is extremely considered about becoming a small business owner as he is seeing many small business owners very very unhappy.
I’ve never purchased a business. I’ve been in the industry since 2002. I have a BS and MS in exercise science. ACE and NASM certified. It would be nice to have some existing clientele when having your own business, instead of starting from scratch. But I’m wondering if it is foolish to ‘buy’ these leads that may or may not be there at the end!?
My personal opinion and a few questions if I were in your shoes:
Why is this person selling a profitable business?
How much is the lease payment?
What type of lease?
Is the equipment paid for?
How old is the equipment?
Square foot rates in the surrounding area?
Overhead, power/heat/AC, cable, insurance, taxes, phone, etc?
Parking square feet?
Have you seen the owners books and tax returns for the last three years?
Some basic questions that need to be asked. And could you start your own business without purchasing and existing business?
What if ALL the existing clients leave? Would you be better off working for a larger club as an employee or as a self contractor?
I have been self employed since 1988 and I love it, and have had many successful start up businesses with the prospects on a 5 acre/40,000 square foot start up facility however, a small studio would not be my first choice.
P.S. Please keep us posted on your venture!
Wishing You Great Success!