Starting your own restaurant.

Joined Apr 10, 2017
I am planing on starting my own restaurant and i was wondering if anyone has any advice on different ways to make it work or maybe you can help me find out what doesnt work. How much did it cost to start up and how long did it take to make a profit? How long did it take you to pay off a loan and how did you go about getting one? How long did it take before your restaurant was running itself? Any advice you can give would help me so much and i would be greatful to learn from someone living my dream. 
Joined Jan 19, 2014
If you think there's ever a time when a restaurant "runs itself", I'd suggest you never open your own restaurant.

Not trying to be snarky, but the very nature of your questions, especially that one, suggest you are not close to ready to open a successful restaurant. There's no "one size fits all" for start up costs, profitability, debt service, etc. How many seats? What kind of concept? Build a kitchen from scratch or acquire an on-going concern? What are lease prices in your targeted location? How many employees do you need to execute your plan. (Hint: you start with a complete business plan and go from there). If you are unsure how to put together a business plan, you aren't ready to even think about opening a successful enterprise. 
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Joined Oct 31, 2012
Let's look at this the other way around. 

How little are you able to live on for one, two, three years?  10k, 20k, 30k, 40k, 50k per year?  So that's a starting figure cuz you still have bills to pay even though your restaurant isn't making money yet. 

Now, do you want an old fashioned lunch counter place? Fine dining? Taco truck? 

Find the location. Decide if lease or buying. So that's another figure you can tack on to the costs. Lease per month or mortgage per month, not including utilities. 

Will the location need renovation? New floor, new equipment, hood? More money. 

Staff of any kind? You'll need to pay them from day one. How much to pay them? More money. 

You haven't bought any food yet and already I'd say your up to a couple of hundred thousand at least. 

Of course, a food truck would be a bit less of an initial investment but you will need someplace to put it when not working. And of course, fees for the site where you will be working. 

So….while at your current job, look around at all the things you see, people included. Someone had to pay for all of that. How much do you suppose what you see costs? 

Oh, and running itself? That will never happen. You will always be running it. 
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