I Want To Start My Own Business, But What Next?

Business By kweenofengland Updated 13 Aug 2010 , 1:07pm by kweenofengland

kweenofengland Posted 9 Aug 2010 , 9:48pm
post #1 of 6

I am a cake hobbiest that is semi-intersted in started my own cake business. I currently work 40 hrs a week as an architectural designer making $45,000 per year. I am married with 3 young boys and an exchange student every year. My current job is ultimately a dead end. My boss, 73 years old, 2 heart attacks and no one under him to take over the business in case of retirement or death....

I am scared to leave this job, but also scared to stay here. I love cake decorating and actually get alot of business but can't do all of them due to my regular work schedule. I also do not have a seperate kitchen, which is required here in Alabama.

I am wondering realistically what all is involved in started my own business, including renting a kitchen or even a building/space to sell. The other thing is I pretty much just like cakes! I dont want to do donuts, cookies, etc. Is that an option? i am thinking accountants, business plan, space rental, boxes! ha. I currently use any box I can find...not very professional. also, software like cake boss. license....gosh, what else do i need to consider. Also, long term what are my chances of making this business life long. So many cake businesses I see go out of business. I think it is mostly from burn out. So many things to be frightened of! HELP!

5 replies
Doug Posted 9 Aug 2010 , 10:04pm
post #2 of 6

my 1st thought is:

what about buying your boss out and making it your business (and he might be a Senior SILENT partner)?

is it dead end because he might be dead or dead in because it has stopped attracting new commissions/projects?

is there growth potential there IF there were a new owner, such as you, with a vision for it?

it would already be fully set up in terms of lawyers, accountants etc.

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as for setting up your own cake business -- read through the business forum -- MANY threads there with excellent advice from actual owners -- still working and retired ones.

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what will you do to cover income gap between current salary and what you'll make caking while you build back up to your current salary?

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quality of life issue: will caking allow as much time with the family as you have now?

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what's the market like where you live? competition? customer base? demand for high end cakes?

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LOTS to consider

kweenofengland Posted 10 Aug 2010 , 7:03pm
post #3 of 6

Thanks Doug...yeah it may not be possible at all, but as far as buying my boss out...ha. well, he is a licensed architect. i have a degree in Computer Aided Design. I can not legally operate his business without an architectural degree. that is 5 years at Auburn (closest school) and 3 year internship then test....i dont see him making it another 8 years!
no we have lots of business...steady federally funded projects. We do HUD work. not glamourous but it pays! it is where the money is right now. still considering my options....
not sure he will go for me taking his business! ha! he is very stubborn and doesnt think anyone can do anything as good as he can. I hesitate to even discuss that with him!
I talked to my husband about it last night and it looks like he wouldnt even consider a pay cut, so dreams down toilet! but not the end of the world! thanks for your help!

leepat Posted 13 Aug 2010 , 10:50am
post #4 of 6

Just one thing to consider. I have had my own bakery for 3 years now (custom order cakes only) and work anywhere from 40 - 60 hr. weeks and have yet to make a profit. I have hired a part time person this year (24 -32 hr) so we are hoping for a small one this year. I also have yet to draw a paycheck also. Think long and hard before you do because you don't just make the big bucks overnight.

kweenofengland Posted 13 Aug 2010 , 1:02pm
post #5 of 6

leepat - that is pretty much what I figured - no profit. But i do not understand how people can run a business and never make a profit? I mean, what is the point? haha! I couldnt imagine how many hours I would have to work to actually even make enough just to cover one day of my current salary. thought if i charged more for a cake that would help, but also if you charge more you lose orders...so that seems like a wash! I am thinking it is not a possibility for me right now. I wish Alabama licensed home kitchens then I could just work out of my home. I know a lady who lives close to me and she built a kitchen in her basement when she was building her house. She works a regular job (well not regular - she works with her husband who sells insurance). She says if she has a lot of cakes to do, her boss(husband) will let her take off of work to get her cakes done. So she is able to operate and work a regular job as well. not sure if she has ever turned a profit yet. I could imagine that I would spend $20,000 on kitchen equipment, appliances, and construction at least. just amazes me that people out there can do it at all! thank you all for your help!

kweenofengland Posted 13 Aug 2010 , 1:07pm
post #6 of 6

leepat - that is pretty much what I figured - no profit. But i do not understand how people can run a business and never make a profit? I mean, what is the point? haha! I couldnt imagine how many hours I would have to work to actually even make enough just to cover one day of my current salary. thought if i charged more for a cake that would help, but also if you charge more you lose orders...so that seems like a wash! I am thinking it is not a possibility for me right now. I wish Alabama licensed home kitchens then I could just work out of my home. I know a lady who lives close to me and she built a kitchen in her basement when she was building her house. She works a regular job (well not regular - she works with her husband who sells insurance). She says if she has a lot of cakes to do, her boss(husband) will let her take off of work to get her cakes done. So she is able to operate and work a regular job as well. not sure if she has ever turned a profit yet. I could imagine that I would spend $20,000 on kitchen equipment, appliances, and construction at least. just amazes me that people out there can do it at all! thank you all for your help!

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