Warrington is a town that thrives on small and medium businesses, with some not so small, and is the centre of a larger area that is an important regional hub.
There is a busy market on buying and selling businesses and the premises that sustain them. Albinson Napier has been a feature of Warrington and district’s commercial conveyancing scene since time out of mind.
Buying a business property is a little like buying a house, but only a little.
A buyer will want to make sure a property is the right one for their business. For this to be the case, it is important to get it right at the stage of purchase.
Does title to the property confer the right to carry out the intended business? Even restrictions in the deeds over a hundred years old and apparently ignored for fifty years can become a problem suddenly. The title has to be checked thoroughly to identify this and guard against it.
Is the property well served by access to the public highways? – Surprisingly often, there are gaps between properties and highways owned by third parties, hidden from inspection but quite capable of restricting trading. They need to be identified before you buy and remedied if possible then.
Has the property planning permission, and the right sort of permission, from the local authority to carry on the sort of business a buyer has in mind? Even if a business has traded from a property for many years there could still be problems if it doesn’t have the right consent.
Buying a property means giving the right consideration to those potential problems, and a host of others as well.
Equally, getting a business purchase right means being aware of all the potential problems that can arise. Generally speaking, there are two ways in which to buy a business – an asset sale and a share sale.
An asset sale is where a buyer acquires not the company or business entity but it’s assets, including property, equipment, customers and employees.
A share sale is where the buyer acquires the company itself – its assets and also all its liabilities.
In either case a buyer will want to make sure that the correct process is followed – and to do so will need the right kind of advice on how to get all the information needed to understand the business being acquired ( called “due diligence”) and how to ensure there is a proper recourse if the business isn’t all it appeared to be ( usually by having suitable “warranties” in the purchase agreement).
Our commercial team, Tim Napier and his son Richard and Graham Wright have extensive experience of buying and selling commercial property and businesses in the town and far outside of the town. They are able to advise on most aspects of a transaction – property, contractual, employment – and to point the way to specialist advice on matters outside of the firm’s expertise, like planning and tax considerations.
They are more than happy to talk on a no commitment basis and offer a free half hour diagnostic on the thing to look out for in buying and selling business and property, and to give realistic estimates of your likely legal costs.