Tough Retirement Decisions for Small Business Owners

Danny Sullivan dreams of gardening and spending time with his grandchildren, but that's just a fantasy. Retirement is out of his reach, at least for the foreseeable future.

Talk about being kicked when you’re already down.  That’s the feeling many small business owners have as they ponder retirement in these tough financial times. Surviving the recession is one thing, but retiring in one seems next to impossible.

The Wall Street Journal considered this topic in a recent article aptly titled “'The Economy Stole My Retirement.'

If you are a small business owner on the one hand – a role that requires flexibility and ingenuity – and a baby-boomer on the other, then this recession has been more than a case of terrible timing. No, it’s thrust you into “business purgatory.” Do you find yourself with one foot in management and the other foot (or maybe just that big toe) in the golden sands of retirement?

A baby boomer who is a small business owner faces a very tough call right now. Should he or she sell for the best offer today, which is generally the low-ball offer, or hold out for some future value which more accurately reflects what the business is truly worth? A tough call, indeed.

For the owners of small businesses and the heads of family businesses, make no mistake about the difficulty of your position. It’s impossible to foretell the future, but since you already know what is most valuable to you (your family and your business), take the time to carefully weigh your options and seek appropriate professional counsel.

You can learn more about business succession planning on our website. Be sure to sign up for our complimentary e-newsletter to stay abreast of issues like these that could affect you, your loved ones and your estate planning.

Reference: The Wall Street Journal (September 12, 2012) “'The Economy Stole My Retirement'

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