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A Business' Best Friend (BFF) - a Strong EBITDA

Many businesspeople who are involved with deals and acquisitions know that a company’s “EBITDA”, the well-known acronym for Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization, is a very important financial metric.  This particular metric is a standard benchmark that acquirors review closely to understand a company’s cash flow.  This metric is considered a good proxy for a company’s cash flow. 

So, What is USPAP?

You may have heard the acronym “USPAP” (commonly pronounced “yoos-pap”) in relation to some sort of asset appraisal, and briefly wondered what this piece of alphabet soup meant, then forgot about it as your eyes glazed over. Well, this is your lucky day! Read on for a primer on USPAP, the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice.    

Life Lessons While Traveling


One of the many things I love about the work we do at Sobel EAC Valuations is the opportunity to travel and see new places that I may never see otherwise. Most of the places I visited have been interesting and fun places to see – Houston, Austin, and Dallas, Texas, and Indianapolis, Indiana. I was part of the team that valued all the personal property assets at Yosemite National Park. I have seen Lake Superior from its shore in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Wherever I go, I can find something new and interesting to see that I end up talking about for weeks.

Are Intangible Assets Being Included in Your Property Tax Assessment

As the pandemic continues to cause havoc in everyone’s day to day life, financial survival is driving many decisions at all levels of society.  This is true with individuals as well as in government. As consumer spending remains much lower than usual, government tax collections are also much lower. Among the many different types of government funding, one is the collection of property taxes. Bear in mind that different taxing authorities include different categories of assets when applying their tax rates. This means that not all types of assets are subject to tax.

Key Concepts in an Economic Damage Calculation

During 25 years of performing valuation work, I have been asked numerous times to perform an economic damages calculation or provide a rebuttal report of economic damages.  If a person is performing an economic damages calculation, it is imperative that he or she be very familiar with several key concepts of economic damages, and the criteria that must be included and met in order for a claim of economic damages.  While financial and valuation experts are not lawyers, the calculation of economic damages is not just a mathematical exercise.  Addressing key concepts such as causation, foresee

Appraisers, Not Advocates

When appraising property (real estate, personal property) or the equity value of a business, there will likely be discussions, and possibly disagreements, on the concluded opinion of value. The client may hope for a low value if they are using the appraisal for a tax appeal or estate planning/administration, or they may want a high value if they are trying to borrow money or sell a property or business. Many clients believe when they have hired an appraiser, they have hired an advocate. This is incorrect.

COVID-19 and its Effects on Commercial Real Estate

By now we all know that COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.  It came to our attention in December 2019 when  clinicians in Wuhan, China notified public health authorities of a cluster of asymptomatic pneumonia cases, some with ties to a seafood market in the city.  Within weeks a novel coronavirus was identified and sequenced, with the sequence published online for use by other scientists and public health authorities globally.

Are Your Books and Records Adding Value to Your Business?

Books and records. Bookkeeping. Accounting. Tax returns and quarterly filings. Business owners typically view these as required administrative duties and consider it an expense. Have you ever thought about your accounting systems as more than an expense, and how it may benefit you, above and beyond reporting numbers and forms?  

Cost Segregation

According to the American Society of Cost Segregation Professionals, a cost segregation is "the process of identifying property components that are considered "personal property" or "land improvements" under the federal tax code."

What does this mean?   

Typically, commercial real estate can be depreciated over a 39-year life. However, the IRS allows certain items, considered to be personal property, to be depreciated over a shorter life – five, seven, or fifteen years – thereby accelerating the depreciation of those assets.