Business Broker vs. Restaurant Broker Finding the Right Person to Sell Your Restaurant

Posted by Robin Gagnon on Dec 28, 2022 10:07:18 AM


When it comes to Selling a Restaurant, many people think they can use the same business broker that they would use for any other business. However, there are significant differences between the two types of brokers that must be taken into consideration. Restaurant brokers specialize in the nuances of the restaurant industry and often have relationships with buyers through their contacts in finance, real estate, hospitality, franchisees and former experience. Here are some key differences between using a restaurant broker vs. a general business broker:

Restaurant Broker vs. Business Broker

1. Restaurant brokers understand the legalities associated with buying/selling restaurants like liquor licenses or food protocols; this knowledge is not necessarily shared by all business brokers who may not deal in these areas as frequently.
2. Business brokers may lack local connections to potential buyers and sellers; restaurant brokers usually have an extensive network of contacts in the foodservice industry that could be beneficial when looking for investors or customers.
3. Restaurant brokers are familiar with industry trends and pricing guidelines which are important factors when setting a sale price; whereas general business brokers may not have such experience so they may not know what to look out for when negotiating deals.
4. Restaurant brokers also understand the best way to value a restaurant business for sale. The restaurant evaluation process has a specific formula with a right and wrong answer that generic business brokers likely won't have the experience to calculate.

Finding the Right Restaurant Broker

Now that you know the key differences between a generic business broker and the highly specialized restaurant broker, it's time to find the right restaurant broker to help you with you sell your restaurant for the  most money in the shortest time. A knowledgeable and experienced restaurant broker can make all the difference when selling your business! Before signing on with either type of broker, it’s important to conduct research on each candidate to ensure you’re making an informed decision that will benefit you financially and legally down the line!

A good restaurant broker will help you navigate through the whole process, from setting an accurate sales price to marketing your business and closing the deal. Here are some tips for finding the right restaurant broker:

  • Research potential brokers in your area – this could include conducting interviews, looking at reviews and social media presence.
  • Look for someone who has experience with selling restaurants specifically, as opposed to more general real estate experience.
  • Make sure you feel comfortable talking with them and that they understand your needs and goals for selling the restaurant.
  • Research the brokerage they represent. Are they an independent restaurant broker, or part of a larger brand? Obtain references from previous clients or review testimonials so that you can gauge their level of customer service and success rates in selling restaurants similar to yours.
  • Ensure that any contract you sign outlines all services provided clearly including what type of marketing efforts will be used and how much commission will be charged – make sure everything is in writing!
  • Take time to review their proposal before signing on – make sure it aligns with your expectations for selling your restaurant and offers satisfactory terms for both parties involved in the transaction. 


Download and save our free Seller's Checklist to use while you are searching for the right person to sell your restaurant. 

Restaurant Owners Trust Certified Restaurant Brokers to Sell Their Business

Finding the right restaurant broker can not only save you time but also money. We Sell Restaurants produces the only Certified Restaurant Brokers in the nation who are uniquely equipped to assist restaurant owners exit their restaurant business successfully. Our process and expertise  Find a Certified Restaurant Broker® near you to speak with one of our experts about selling your restaurant!

Read also: 10 Things a Restaurant Broker Does to Get to Closing

Download the Free Guide to Selling a Restaurant

Robin slug photoRobin Gagnon, Certified Restaurant Broker®, MBA, CBI, CFE is the co-founder of We Sell Restaurants and industry expert in restaurant sales and valuation. Named by Nation’s Restaurant News as one of the “Most Influential Suppliers and Vendors” to the restaurant industry, her articles and expertise appear nationwide in QSR Magazine, Franchising World, Forbes, Yahoo Finance, and BizBuySell. She is the co-author of Appetite for Acquisition, an award-winning book on buying restaurants.

Topics: Selling a Restaurant

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