Last Friday afternoon I was a guest on KSEV Radio AM 700 with host Aubrey Thoede and had the opportunity to discuss a subject that many call-in listeners wanted to learn more about....starting their own franchise. But buying a new franchise is not the best way to go about achieving the "American Dream."

Once you've hit five years, your odds of survival go way up," Birch said. "Only two to three percent of businesses older than five shut down each year." http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/smallbusiness/columnist/abrams/2004-05-06-success_x.htm

Everyone reads or hears about big corporate mergers and large company acquisitions. However, big corporations aren't the only companies being bought and sold. Profitable, privately-held small businesses are changing hands everyday. These transactions are done behind the scenes and are not reported along with the daily stock market news. These business exchanges fly under the radar of the public at large -- which may be part of the reason that it is not commonly understood that buying an existing small business is the most viable path to being a successful business owner.

If you are considering your options for going into business for yourself, buying an already established profitable business should be the first option on your list and starting a new franchise the last. Here are six slam-dunk reasons why:

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