Q: What creates some of the most difficult issues when transferring the ownership of a business?
A: Your books and records need to be up to date! Whether you are a ‘mom & pop’ business or a middle-market business, buyers buy what buyers can see! If you cannot prove your earnings, then buyers do not want to pay any goodwill for it. Too many discretionary expenses that the IRS might question make buyers question too. To paraphrase: Give the IRS what is the IRS’s and sell to the Buyer what will actually be the Buyer’s.
Do not be penny wise and pound foolish!