What’s the standard retainer for BV projects?

BVWireIssue #54-4
March 28, 2007

If you answered 50% of anticipated project fees, you were right on the money: In response to last week’s online survey, the vast majority (91.3%) of respondents said they required up-front payments before the start of any valuation engagement.   Only 8.7% (or 4 out of a total of 46) respondents said they do not solicit retainers.

As to the breakdown of retainer amounts, a clear majority (59.5%) of online respondents receive 50% of project fees as a down payment.   The remainder spread their responses fairly evenly through the breakdowns, with about 7% receiving retainers in each of the amounts (25% to 100%) of project fees.

These results neatly coincide with the results in BVR’s just-published 2007 Business Valuation Firm Economics & Best Practices Survey , which found that just about the same majority of responding BV firms (60.5%) require half of the project fees as a standard retainer, while about a tenth require 25% or 33%.   To order your complete copy, click here.

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