Doug, the first thing I would say is to use stay away from the vast majority of "lenders", populating this bulletin board. Most appear to be either scam artists or amateurs. Some are legitimate, but finding those that are can be an incredible risk.. That being said, you state that you cannot find anyone to give you a loan, but you do not state who you have contacted. So the question begs, what exactly have you tried, thus far? Moreover, what is your credit score? What is your wife's credit score?
And what kind of businesses this? You say it's a franchise, but you don't say what kind. And paying $225,000 for a $260,000 annual revenue concerns me. In the vast majority of cases, the gross Revenue means nothing; it is the Net figure that determines the price, most frequently. Particularly in getting a loan, the Net income is almost the only thing a lender will want to know.
If I were in your position, I would contact a credit union, or a small local, or perhaps regional bank that is a preferred SBA lender. Take your tax returns and copies of your own savings and checking accounts with you and see if you can get some kind idea of what type of loan they might be willing to entertain, on your behalf. Keep in mind that frankly, getting "pre-approved" is almost worthless. It is not until you obtain all of the seller's tax returns and other information that you can obtain some sort of bona fide understanding of your credit worthiness. It is never just about you! It is a combination of your credit capabilities, in combination with the credit worthiness of the business, itself. I do have some sympathy with the seller, in that he certainly does not want to spread his own tax returns around to unqualified people. And you owe it to yourself to understand what you are or are not capable of doing, from a financial perspective. By learning more about that process, you can best understand what your targets should be, if not this particular opportunity. If you are not qualified to acquire this business, you may learn what you need to do in order to prepare yourself for the next one.