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Selling One, Starting Another, Scared, Advice?

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Selling One, Starting Another, Scared, Advice? - 8/4/2013 2:35:44 PM   


Posts: 1
Joined: 8/4/2013
Status: offline
Here is my story. Would like to visit with others who can relate.

I'm a wife and mother, I'm also a medical professional who works at a hospital, except off due to an injury right now.

A little over fifteen years ago, my husband and I decided to start a small business. We did a tremendous amount of research into equipment, building, what we could expect our costs and profits to be. We visited similar businesses, attended conventions, and went to trade shows. We joined business associations. We came up with a business plan, and approached our local bank for financing. Now, this is a very small town, so these people know us well. We had been customers for years. We owned our home and vehicles free and clear, had excellent credit, and a reputation for hard work. We also had roughly $100,000 in CD's and investment accounts, being quite frugal, as well as no other debts. We knew our business would cost around half a million dollars. The bank was excited to have a new business, and approved our loan. I gave them $100,000, as well as the title to our house, and the business would also be collateral, and we started building.

We opened in 1999, and from day one, were extremely devoted to our business, working often fifteen hours or more a day, probably to the detriment of our small children. Our family helped, and we did hire an employee after a few months, but continued to be very frugal. Our business was very, very physically & mentally taxing, but we worked VERY hard. Within a few years, we had received an endorsement by the government allowing us to expand, and expand we did. I searched tirelessly for ANY angle I could find to market our products. I got distributors. I sold online. I sold for fundraising. I got other websites to carry my product. My husband became president of our trade association. We had soon tripled our sales, if not more. We hired more employees, bringing the total, with us, to five. We were active in our trade association and the chamber. We donated to fundraisers. Our kids, now high schoolers, began to help us when they could. We never became wealthy or had a large income, and we lived a life without extravagance, but were very happy. We were paying the bills, improving our products, helping others, and we had done it all by working hard.

Life was good for 8 or so years. I returned to my medical profession part-time. We had a happy family, a happy marriage, and a business we adored and were proud of. We had received over fifty awards, as well as media recognition.

About three years ago, Disaster 1 occurred. We had always paid our taxes quarterly, but evidently our accountant messed up. We were supposed to pay unemployment taxes on the first $7,000 of each employee's wages. We had been paying on ALL their wages, massively overpaying as a result. So for three employees, we should have paid on $21,000. We had paid on over $100,000 per year. Somehow (and idk how, since we were reporting the wages of three people on their SSNs) the IRS determined we must, in fact, have about fifteen employees, which we ONLY paid unemployment taxes and nothing else on. The accountant was aware something was wrong, because she got multiple letters from them wanting information, but she ignored them. As we had arranged for all tax correspondence to go to her, we were blissfully unaware there was any problem until the IRS seized all our money....between our personal and business accounts, over $40,000. We had to let our employees go, as we were broke. It took over a year and thousands of dollars to recoup part of it.

A month later, Disaster 2. I fell down the stairs, annihilating my knees and legs.

We continued on and on until this year, when I could work no more. At the end, I could bear weight only ten minutes at a time. My husband destroyed his shoulder. FORTUNATELY, we have health insurance. We fell behind on almost everything, and finally with great sorrow went to talk to the bank. The business is worth probably nearly a million dollars, and we owe about $300,000. By erasing penalties for being late, overdrawn, etc, we owe about $250,000. They said to try to find a buyer, try to get close to that, and let's write off the rest, release your house, and let you get your life back. You are forty years old and need a walker. Life is not happy. We are both losing money. They are losing the interest. We are losing about $250,000 we have into it.

Immediately we were approached by many people seeking a bargain, offers for $20,000 etc....offers on our personal property as well. People assumed that injured and unable to work, we would soon be desperate and without food. I had a major surgery, and then a complication requiring another. Our vehicle broke down. I sold antiques for utility/food money. We do finally have someone legitimately interested at our asking price.

I blame it all on our two disasters. But.....we can't do it....every month, we go in the hole from just utilities.....he is getting a good deal....I hope he can make it what it was not long ago, before the world fell apart. And we can pay it off, and be done. Because I cannot even bear to see it.

I hope to return to my job within a couple months. But, we have to eat, and so my brother and I sold some ground we owned, and this has given us a security net. We were able to purchase a reliable vehicle, and we will not starve or do without.

I want to leave. My husband doesn't. He doesn't want to have to move. He has only a high school diploma, and no skills, except from our business, at which he was a star. Except one. He is good at buying, selling, restoring, etc....antiques. He wants to start an antique and vintage business, selling at shows, flea markets, antique malls, etc. He does it out of the house, so there is no overhead, no employees. We have been avid antiquers for years, and have probably $30,000 in inventory, if we wished to sell.

I admit, the idea is intriguing and romantic.....two forty-something empty nesters traipsing around, buying and selling things they love. And due to selling the ground, I CAN afford it, even though we will gain nothing dollar wise from the sale of our once thriving business....except finality, closure, and peace.

But I'm afraid. I'm afraid to do ANYTHING. I expect to fail no matter what I do, spectacularly.
Post #: 1
RE: Selling One, Starting Another, Scared, Advice? - 8/5/2013 1:59:57 PM   


Posts: 2
Joined: 7/23/2013
Status: offline
Good day,
why don't you let me assist you with funds... I am an investor and willing to invest big.. if you can convince me then i'll fund what project you need...

Just mail me at

(in reply to stressedlady)
Post #: 2
RE: Selling One, Starting Another, Scared, Advice? - 1/2/2020 9:13:41 AM   


Posts: 6
Joined: 12/31/2019
From: Oregon
Status: offline
You ask for advise and get spam... Seems this forum is over run with it.

I feel that if it makes you happy then it's worth a try. If your going back to work then let the hubby do it and see how it goes.
Post #: 3
RE: Selling One, Starting Another, Scared, Advice? - 1/2/2020 9:15:04 AM   


Posts: 6
Joined: 12/31/2019
From: Oregon
Status: offline
I see I'm pretty ignorant! The original post is 6 years old... Oh well

(in reply to dwkresin)
Post #: 4
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