I emailed a new bakery in my town about possibly renting their kitchen so that I can maybe become a licensed decorator. They don't make wedding/party cakes. They wrote back asking for more details such as how many hours a week, would I use my own ingredients or theirs, what days. Honestly, I have no idea. I took a break from decorating two years ago when I got pregnant and had my son. I'm just now starting back up again and spreading the word to friends and family. I don't know how many orders I'll get. Does anyone have any experience with this sort of stuff. I'd like to write back by tomorrow (Monday) with more info. I live in PA.
I think it's best to write a business plan and use that as guide. What do you hope to achieve with renting this kitchen? How many cakes per week are you prepared to decorate? I know it can be overwhelming especially when things fall into place so quickly. Start researching threads on here regarding starting your own bakery/business since that's essentially what you are doing. It seems like this is a good opportunity since they have a storefront/foot traffic and should be able to refer business to you. But don't rush into it...give yourself time to gather all details. Send me a PM if you would like to discuss ideas in more detail. *I'm in the same boat as you as I am getting ready to rent a kitchen for thanksgiving pies/holiday cakes and fundraisers.
Maybe you have already done this but it would also help to be aware of the local competition or lack thereof. For instance one the professional decorators in Erie recently took a hiatus. I can't say closed up shop because their website leaves open the possibility of returning.
However did talk to a friend a few weeks ago who lives near Erie and their statement was now there is no one in the area that can do high quality cakes. This hiatus would likely impact your potential business as if you did set up shop with this bakery, you would likely be the only commercial operation. (Leaving open the possibility that there may be another shop out there I overlooked). So I would second the previous advice to do some research and work out a business plan, it is good to know they will rent.
Definitely write up a business plan first, this will give you a better idea of what to offer, what to charge, who to target, etc.
You may also want to think about if you want to operate as your own business or become an employee of the bakery so you can focus on the baking side instead of running the business. If the bakery is interested in branching out into cakes (and your proposal shows this would be a profitable move) you should be able to operate relatively autonomously as their employee.