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The Costs of Starting Up a Restaurant

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There are many mistakes people make when it comes to opening a new restaurant. One of the big ones is miscalculating restaurant start-up costs. That’s why it’s so crucial you estimate your budget and evaluate all costs so you begin with realistic expectations.

To make your new restaurant successful, you need to do a costs breakdown. That means calculating exactly how much money you’ll need for:

  • Equipment and technology
  • Marketing and advertising
  • Staff
  • Rent
  • Supplies

You’ll also need to consider your restaurant’s fit out costs, so you know how much money you need to invest in the design of the venue, including possible renovation and remodelling.

Knowing your restaurant costs’ percentages upfront will greatly help you with your business planning, because you’ll have a clear idea of how much you should invest to get your business off the ground. But to run a successful restaurant, you also need to have a strong business plan.

Why you will need a detailed business plan

A detailed business plan will guide you every step of the way towards making your new restaurant successful. It’s good to have a clear vision of what you want to achieve on paper.

Your business plan should cover every little thing your new restaurant will need, starting from your costs, staff training and sales forecast to décor, food style, menus and more.

You also need to include your budget estimate and schedules, because that will help you with your planning process and point you in the right direction towards realising your dream.

New equipment & maintenance on new equipment

New equipment will significantly impact your budget, since you will need, among other things:

  • Refrigerators
  • Freezers
  • Ovens
  • Fryers
  • Ventilation equipment
  • Counters with heating and cooling units
  • All your cooking utensils.

Start-up costs will vary depending on the size and style of your restaurant. You can save a lot of money by purchasing wholesale equipment, as well as commercial products regarding the plates, glasses and other breakable items.

You should also consider maintenance costs, as they can be very expensive. Have in mind that they can be much higher for older equipment, since it may need repairs and parts replacements through general wear and tear.

Apps, tech & an efficient POS system

Among the important start-up components of your business, you’ll need an accounting system, a phone and internet connection, EFTPOS software, a POS system, and much more.

It’s essential to have a good restaurant POS system, because it can have such a drastic impact on your staff and customer experience. It will help you manage your restaurant effectively and efficiently and improve your overall business.

You’ll also want durable POS hardware that’s designed to take a few knocks, given the chaotic environment of your restaurant.

Marketing & advertising

Good marketing is what will help you build a strong brand and reputation, so don’t think of it as an expense, but rather an investment.

There are many affordable ways to advertise your business nowadays. Some of the most effective ones include social media engagement, email and PPC campaigns. Don’t forget to make a website for your restaurant, where you can run a blog and share every information about your restaurant.

Reno, remodelling & décor

Renovation and remodelling costs can be very high, but they are often necessary. However, you can save a lot of money by installing only what’s absolutely necessary at first, and then remodelling as your business grows.

Décor is very important, as it’s responsible for your customers’ first impressions and helps define your restaurant theme. But you can go with something simple and cheap, rather than choosing an extravagant style, because simplicity is not only more affordable, but can also result in a very hip décor.

Food expenses

Your food expenses will be among your biggest costs once your restaurant is up and running. But food is the most important part of your restaurant, so investing a lot in it will only bring positive results. You should keep food costs between 28% and 35% of your revenue.

Before you start making a profit, you need to make sure that you have enough budget for all the supplies. Estimate your food costs by researching suppliers and food ingredients (based on your menu), so that you can know both how much you’ll need to invest and how to set your prices. You can save a lot by sticking to a smaller menu, as well as on implementing food waste recycling.

This sums up the basic start-up costs you will need to consider when opening a new restaurant. Before you indulge in such an endeavour, make sure you conduct thorough research and learn exactly how much money you’ll need to invest to make your restaurant truly successful.

For everything you need to know about starting up your restaurant, check out the Impos blog.