Acjohnson Posted 12 Aug 2011 , 4:19pm
post #1 of

I was given a list from the Health Dept of all the licensed kitchens in my County, no church's, fire dept, private school or anyone on that list will rent even after explaining that I will be licensed and insured. Now I know this is possible because I see people on FB in my area that "say" they are renting a kitchen. Am I missing something?

41 replies
MimiFix Posted 13 Aug 2011 , 1:50am
post #2 of

Have you tried asking restaurants, bakeries, or other eateries, if you can rent space during their off hours? And I suggest you ask those Facebook page owners where they rent. Good luck!

Acjohnson Posted 13 Aug 2011 , 2:56am
post #3 of

Thanks I expanded my search to the next county and asked a few restaurants and bakeries. Still nothing.
I've asked about where they rent and they won't tell me.

step0nmi Posted 13 Aug 2011 , 3:41am
post #4 of

hmmm...seems pretty strange icon_confused.gif what state are you in?

Acjohnson Posted 13 Aug 2011 , 3:49am
post #5 of

I'm in Maryland.

The Health Dept. Lady has been helpful. She said most people knew the landlord of a place personally which made it easy to rent the Kitchen. It seems to be you need to know the right people.

bonniebakes Posted 13 Aug 2011 , 3:00pm
post #6 of

I'm not sure I understand...

Do you meant that the health department gave you a list of places in your county that have "legal kitchens" - including churches, fire departments, schools, etc., but when you contacted them they all said no to your request?

Or do you mean that the health department said that you can't use the kitchen facilities of churches, fire departments, schools, etc., so now you don't know where to look for a legal space to use?

Acjohnson Posted 13 Aug 2011 , 7:28pm
post #7 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by bonniebakes

I'm not sure I understand...

Do you meant that the health department gave you a list of places in your county that have "legal kitchens" - including churches, fire departments, schools, etc., but when you contacted them they all said no to your request?

Or do you mean that the health department said that you can't use the kitchen facilities of churches, fire departments, schools, etc., so now you don't know where to look for a legal space to use?




They gave me a list of nonprofits that have licensed kitchens. I contacted them and they aren't interested in renting to me.

step0nmi Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 3:26am
post #8 of

it's probably because they are nonprofits. I called a church once in my town and they thought it was crazy that i even asked :p it was because they are a non profit and anything affiliated with them had to be that way too...maybe that's the reason?

DoniB Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 3:48am
post #9 of

I would be leery of renting from a church, to be honest. The non-profit educational group I participate in has had issues from time to time with losing event space because a member of the church needed the space, instead. You'd think that a deposit and a written contract would hold our date, but apparently it's not if a church member decides they absolutely have to have that particular date.

It would be awful to rent space and book jobs, only to find out you don't have the use of the kitchen after all, because the church decided they have something more important.

(NOTE: I am NOT attacking the church, just the policies of some of the ones we've dealt with. Others have been wonderful and we have long-standing relationships with them. They would never think to do something like that. Guess it's a 'your mileage may vary' situation.)

You might check with little cafes or locally owned and operated eateries where they only serve breakfast and lunch. If they close down after lunch, there's a good chance they'd let you use their facilities. Worth a shot. icon_smile.gif

Either way, good luck!

platinumlady Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 4:24am

Where I rent they are very open & this subject came up...The ennovation works hand & hand with Indep school district the received a grant to build the kitchens etc. But the President says it is not profitable for them. The don't make money off the money we pay to rent the kitchen. however since they have other things that brings in money they are able to offer kitchen rentals. He said a lot of places just try to rent space & that's it struggle & don't keep the doors open very long. They have been burned by people that use the kitchen & never pay. etc...so there is a lot of behind the scene stuff that goes on. I was blessed to be told about this place...because they are so connected with the community & the community wants them to succeed & the clients to succeed as well.

Don't give up, there are places that will rent kitchen space. You will find the right one for you

Tzoavva Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 6:16am

Acjohnson what county are you in? I think there is a commercial kitchen in Montgomery County. Also is Virginia near you there may be options for renting a commercial kitchen there. Tossing some ideas out in case they help.

cupncake1 Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 8:23am

Ok I'm confused about this also, when I called the health department they gave me 2 names, thats it, in all of Southerm California, and the closest of the 2 was 3 cities away, it was also very expensive, like $300.00 dollers, it's just way too inconvient to do that as well as expensive, I had asked because I was interested in selling at a farmers market, they told me that even if I had my own bakery Id still have to rent from them, so were they not telling me every thing? Can I rent from a local buisness? And how do I know if they have a commercial kitchen or not?

MimiFix Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 11:16am
Quote:
Originally Posted by cupncake1

Ok I'm confused about this also, when I called the health department they gave me 2 names, thats it, in all of Southerm California, and the closest of the 2 was 3 cities away, it was also very expensive, like $300.00 dollers, it's just way too inconvient to do that as well as expensive, I had asked because I was interested in selling at a farmers market, they told me that even if I had my own bakery Id still have to rent from them, so were they not telling me every thing? Can I rent from a local buisness? And how do I know if they have a commercial kitchen or not?




Unfortunately, we often receive few straight answers and about this topic. Either we're told only part of what we need to move our business ahead or the answer could be downright wrong.

cupncake1, if you were told that even a bakery needs to rent space in a commercial kitchen, that is not correct. A licensed bakery does use a licensed commercial kitchen or they would not be in business. I've had email exchanges with several CA readers and I know that several of them eventually found nearby eateries to work from - places that did not charge much and were happy to have the extra income. I'm sorry that your county health department is not helpful. I suggest you call your State Ag & Markets and see what they can tell you. Good luck.

Acjohnson Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 11:36am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tzoavva

Acjohnson what county are you in? I think there is a commercial kitchen in Montgomery County. Also is Virginia near you there may be options for renting a commercial kitchen there. Tossing some ideas out in case they help.



I'm in Harford County

SusieV Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 12:39pm

Hi Everyone,

I was wondering how much money is reasonable to rent a commercial space?

Acjohnson Posted 14 Aug 2011 , 12:44pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by SusieV

Hi Everyone,

I was wondering how much money is reasonable to rent a commercial space?




It depends on your volume and productivity. I prefer to rent by the hour and not have a minimum amount of hours I have to rent each month. I"m looking for $15-$25/hr and that include storage space. I plan to bake for a few hours right off the bat so I can have cakes ready to go in the freezer.

homemaderachel Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 7:13pm

I'm in Middle River, Baltimore County. MD. and i'm wondering the same thing. I need to know average hourly cost as I'm looking to start baking birthday and event cakes soon.

Acjohnson Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 7:59pm

homemaderachel my only suggestion would be to start calling around to see even if there is anything available to rent in your area.

SusieV Posted 24 Aug 2011 , 3:33pm

Thank you for your reply, this helped me to start a search.

sweetpea1972 Posted 26 Aug 2011 , 4:17pm

Acjohson-

I've run into the same problems. I wasn't sure if it was the licensing and insurance that had them all turning us down. In our case, my husband is trying to start another food-based business and even though we know a few people we haven't had much luck finding someplace. Small, local restaurants are our next avenue. (We're in AA County)

I'm thinking that that is the business to be in! Building a commercial kitchen to rent out time. It seems like, especially with the economy, people are trying different ways of making extra money. Small food-based businesses seem to be an attractive way to do that.

Sorry, that wasn't much help icon_smile.gif

bonniebakes Posted 8 Sep 2011 , 8:25pm

I've been looking into spaces to rent and I was wondering what you Marylanders had learned about what *we* would need to have in place to legally do that. I haven't had much luck getting a single straight answer from my local health department...

If I wanted to do my baking/decorating out of an already licensed commercial kitchen (like a church or existing cafe), what would I need to have in place?

I assume I would need to form my own business, get a servesafe certificate, and liability insurance. Is there anything else I need (other than the actual location, I mean)?

KuyaRomeo Posted 8 Sep 2011 , 11:11pm

To share a little information I recently learned (as I am in the process of opening a bakery using a rented commercial kitchen).

After hours of research and phone calls, etc, I learned that the avg cost to rent a kitchen in my area is $20 to $30 per hour, some charing much more, but none charging less.

Many had 20 hour per month minimums - but a very few offered a full access monthly rate that was under $600 and one even under $500 per month for unlimited 24 hour usage. So, if you look hard enough you can find a decent opportunity.

But there are many more stipulations and pricey add ons of opening a retail bakery . . even if it is rented kitchen:

1. Insurance. Be prepared to shell out a down payment for liability insurance. Most shared kitchens want proof of insurance before they will rent to you. Our policy cost about $500 yearly with 30% down and monthly payments.

2. Health Inspection - could cost several hundred dollars. Even though the kitchen is already inspected, you will still need your own inspection/permit.

3. Here in NYS, you are obligated (as far as I understand) to also have disability insurance, or you won't get your permit. My agent tells me this will increase our premium from $500 to $630. Not too bad, but all the things keep adding up.

4. Workers Comp Insurance -another wonderful thing that is needed (as far as I understand . . even if you have no employees). This is pricey. It adds another $1,200 a year to our policy . .and that was just a rough estimate.

Then add in price of ingredients, boxes, equipt, etc . . .

Renting a kitchen is still quite an investment for a few cakes a month. But we laugh in the face of danger . .. and are doing it anyway.

Bridgette1129 Posted 19 Oct 2011 , 11:46pm

[quote="Acjohnson"]

Quote:
Originally Posted by SusieV

Hi Everyone,

I was wondering how much money is reasonable to rent a commercial space?




It obviously depends on your location. But, in Seattle, WA (somewhat high cost of living) the minimum I have found is $25 an hour with a 4 hour minimum. I have seem some much higher than this.

If you rent by the month, it's obviously a lot cheaper per hour.

Tammy21122 Posted 20 Oct 2011 , 12:35am

To the Maryland girls.....check with your local VFW/Moose Lodge etc.....if you know of anyone who is a member they may be able to speak with someone there for you.

sberryp Posted 20 Oct 2011 , 1:07am

I still don't understand why we can not have a home base business in MD. Is there anything we can do to get a cottage law passed in MD?

sberryp Posted 20 Oct 2011 , 1:09am

I don't mind getting my kitchen inspected and anything else. This is the major reason I only bake for friends and family.

Bridgette1129 Posted 21 Oct 2011 , 4:50am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tammy21122

To the Maryland girls.....check with your local VFW/Moose Lodge etc.....if you know of anyone who is a member they may be able to speak with someone there for you.




Do you have to be a member? I emailed VFW and am waiting to hear back.

MimiFix Posted 24 Oct 2011 , 12:14pm

It can be quite expensive and frustrating to find a commercial kitchen. I used to recommend the shared use kitchens, which are businesses specifically set up for small food businesses so they can rent space. I've found that non-profit shared-use kitchens are reasonably priced and also offer business help. But the for-profit kitchens charge so much that it's hardly worth the time and money to rent. I now recommend that people look at existing businesses (restaurants, bars, delis, etc) or community agencies (churches, schools, VFWs, firehalls, etc.) that already have commercial kitchens. These places are often willing to rent or barter space for a low amount.

Another option is to find a small storefront and share that space with another small business. A couple months ago I wrote about All Good Bakers in Albany NY. http://bakingfix.com/thefix/?p=5003 Their start-up may help give you ideas.

bonniebakes Posted 26 Oct 2011 , 6:53pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by sberryp

I still don't understand why we can not have a home base business in MD. Is there anything we can do to get a cottage law passed in MD?




it' unlikely. But, there s a thread about passing a cottage food bill in MD that you might want to rad so you can see where the process is.

cutie4lif587 Posted 8 Jan 2013 , 11:11pm

to the maryland bakers: have any of you found a kitchen to rent yet? i am interested in doing the same thing

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