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    4 Replies Latest reply on Jan 19, 2012 12:20 PM by biz2capital

    Restaurant loan

    petit4 Newbie
      Hi, I'm happy I stumbled on this website, hopefully someone here will have some info that would help me.
      I am a single middle age woman and I would love to know what is my chance to get financial help to open a restaurant.
      I worked as a chef for 14 years for family restaurant so I know what is involved. I did spend more hours in than the owners.
      I did my menus, all ordering, food cost, cut my meat and fish, made soups and desserts, all the prep etc.I even cemented holes in the floor,cleaned coils on refrigerators and tiled floor in the bathroom
      Now I work as a waitress past 3 years but realized that will not get me anywhere.Reason why I quit the cooking is b/c I felt I've been taken advantage off. I did not have benefits or paid holidays or bonuses,our vaccation was one week of unemployment. My hourly pay was 50 cents more than lunch cook but I had all this responsibility! And lets not talk about how overtime pay worked . Anyway, so I took a break.
      I would like to find something in decent location, cost of rent would be important to me. Since working w/ almost 200 seats I decided I'd like to have something smaller, more managable w/fewer employees.But no more than 70 seats.I can not stand people calling sick and not showing up. I am able to plan and set up kitchen for work efficiency. I know exactly what equipment I need. I have a menu- so far without prices b/c I don't know the current food cost but I know food companies and salesman from working w/them for so many years. As a mentioned, I wait tables and many customers know me and my food, I even help my bosses now w/ some specials and prep. I think I would have many customers from past following b/c they know my food.
      I was thinking finding half empty restaurant (leased monthly)would be better so I can set it up right.Existing restaurants that are for sale seems too expensive.I do not want to pay for business.Plus there is certain oven and stove that I need so I wouldn't want to pay for something I have no use for.
      We have used restaurant equipment in the area also but I would preffer to buy at least double convection oven new.I wouldn'tmind to lease equipment too if it helpsfinancially in the begining.
      I have a boyfriend who would also work as a prep and lunch cook and help w bussing and other as needed. He has years of residential construction experience so any possible remodeling and fixing would be his responsibility. And my boyfriend's friend of over 20 years has restaurant management experience,he would take care of the "front" and the paper work. We also have an accountant who would work for us.
      The menu prices would be around 10 dollars for early birds-got to have those here in Florida! Regular prices 12 and up, mid range 15-19 dollars and few highier items like lobster tails and nice steaks. Lunch would be less.No breakfast! Open 6 days, probably closed sunday. Sunday breakfast seems to be a big deal around here and many times nights were slow b/c of it. Many restaurants are closed on mondays so we might get extra people in once trained to come in. I'd like to have beer and wine only w/ option for customers to bring their own hard liquor.
      Together we have very small amount of money, just enough to stock the restaurant w/food but that's it. How and where should we go to get financial help? Would we qualify? When it comes to computer system, can I get a program without hiring computer company that charges arm and leg? I have someone who would do the work if I had the right program to install.
      I'm not sure if private investor would work b/c I have no idea how much they charge interest etc.
      Anybody who can help w/info, please replly .
      Also, I would like to aplogize for my not so perfect english. I am originally from Europe-totaly legal since day one.
      I saw websites that offer financing to single woman etc, just never contacted anybody yet.
      If everything works out right,we would love to open in August or September before next season.
      Thank you everybody for time and input.
      Helena.
        • Re: Restaurant loan
          LUCKIEST Guide
          Restaurant loan, Welcome Helena

          Thanks for sharing so much info. Do you know about SCORE?? SCORE is FREE and can help you.

          Also have you developed a business plan??

          LUCKIEST
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            • Re: Restaurant loan
              petit4 Newbie
              Thank you so much! We will get in touch w/them.Helena.
                • Re: Restaurant loan
                  Rest.Lee Wayfarer
                  Hello Helena,

                  I read your post and wanted to reply.

                  First, it looks like you have the operational side of the restaurant taken care of but the (most important aspect) business side you need help with. I would say check with your local restaurant association to see if they offer classes on running a restaurant business. There are so many books about opening up a rest. and running it successfully. Also call local restaurant owners to see if they have a few minutes to discuss running a restaurant.

                  You stated that you quit your last job because they did not offer benefits, paid holidays or bonuses, but as a rest. owner it will be the same if not worse.

                  Also dont discount looking at existing restaurants because if the current owner really wants to sell in this market, they may offer owner financing.

                  And it's ok if the rest comes with equipment you cant use, you can sell or lease it to another business to pay for the stove/oven that you need.

                  Finally, you shouldnt set your prices until you know your location and competition in that area. You have to do a market analysis (go and visit restaurant in person) and research the competition and see how they operate.

                  I hope some of this helps and best of luck,

                  Lee
              • Re: Restaurant loan
                biz2capital Adventurer

                Helena,

                 

                I am a financial consultant who helps many restaurants procure funding for these businesses. It sounds like you understand the operations side which is very important, but the business side is an entire new avenue. If you are looking for funding, I think Rest.Lee hit it on the head with the option of owner financing. You can also lease new equipment or get cash for the equipment that's in the business if its paid off and under 10 yrs old.

                 

                My main suggestions with Rest.Lee covering most of the major concerns of holidays and benefits, is to decide if this is what you love and have a passion for. It makes the 14 hour days easier. I'm a numbers and statistics kind of person and think you need to have the odds on your side before you begin. Don't think of yourself as the exception to the rule. Look at what businesses are succeeding in the area, find out why, see if you can take one over since there are a lot of people getting out of that industry due to volatility and generations turning over assets. I wish you the best on your endeavor.