As a matter of fact, I represent a lot of Buyers. Some of them are large corporations. I am negotiating on two Buyer representation deals right now. One is a $6 million deal and the other is a $20 million transaction. Both involve the Seller taking a note. In fact, many Sellers will take paper, once they have a bona fide, experienced Buyer. If you read my original text again, I said that: "Most service businesses require the Seller to hold a note." You have to read the words, Dave. All of the words, not just the ones you want to complain about.
So, why should a Seller hold a note for a large portion of the price, particularly for you, an unknown? If it were that easy, he could sit in his vacation home and let one of his employees run it in his absence, just taking the earnings over time. The whole reason for him to sell, is to allow him to move on. And that takes money. He doesn't have the money to move on, if the majority of his funds are tied up in your note.
Yes, the Buyer takes a large risk. No question. But you ignored my entire thesis, which is that the Buyer has the ability to research the deal, from a business perspective. There is a lot of financial data available, history, you can examine his market and clients, you can talk to his suppliers...what can he really examine from you? Empirically, not much! I guess he could get work references; but the vast majority of employers refuse to give out anything - good, bad or otherwise - because of the law suits that have arisen from such references in the past several decades.
Job history? Yes, you can at least track that. I am doing some consulting right now, and reviewing resumes of the current staff. One guy has been a "Sales Manager" here, a "Regional Manager" there, and a "Branch Manager" in another place. On paper, he looks like he walks on water. But he can't seem to be able to pick up a phone and get an appointment with a sales prospect, based on a lead that was given to him on a silver platter! On paper, he looks like a great guy to sell a business to.
The Seller could get personal references; but how reliable are those? If you had a personal problem with one of your friends, would you really put that in writing to the Seller?
It is you who is myopic, Dave. If you again read what I wrote, you will see that I tried to show why the Sellers do not wish to take a note. But I began the whole dissertation by saying, "Most service businesses require the Seller to hold a note." And I ended by saying, "It is always requires a win-win situation, Dave." And I stand by my assertion that their confidence in the business is not the issue. YOU are the issue. He knows what his business is all about, but he knows nothing about you. And your response is that he should research you? What does he gain from taking a risk on you? He does not research you: YOU make a presentation to him! You want him to take a risk on you and you are telling him what his responsibilities are?
And what do you say about the a guy that started the business from scratch: Who took a personal note on that risk? What records did he have to work from, when deciding whether the entire idea would work, at all? If it is so easy, why to 80% or so of all start-up businesses fail within the first 18 months?
I have a successful business, Dave. More than 70% of my new business comes from referrals from satisfied Buyers and Sellers. So, when you tell me how to run my business, when you insult my business practices, let's keep all of that in mind. It would be a good idea to know that you have some idea - ANY idea of what you are taking about. When you get a business, then perhaps you can give advice, too.