I'm currently struggling with determining which route to take with my dream of having a cake/cupcake business. I can't decide if it would be more beneficial for me to have my business and bake out of a commercial kitchen or do it from a licensed kitchen at home. The thing is, I have to have a completely separate kitchen in my state. Currently, I have no place for a 2nd kitchen. This may sound crazy, but I've considered moving to a house with a basement in order to make this happen. Does this sound ridiculous? My husband is very supportive and wants us to do whatever will work better for us. I'm just not sure which option that would be. Any advice would be so helpful!!
I would start by putting together a business plan and estimating the cost (both up-front and ongoing) of both options. You may want to start out renting a shared commercial kitchen and see how the business does before committing to the large up-front investment of a licensed home kitchen.
Ditto what Jason said. It makes the most sense to start with a smaller initial investment.
Thanks so much for the replies!! Sometimes you just need someone else to look at your situation and give you an objective opinion. And the responses make perfect sense to me now. I am in the beginning stages of starting my business plan. I think I will make one for each scenario and see how they compare....It may take me forever though!!
I agree. Start working in a commercial kitchen and see how it goes before moving to another house, unless you are looking to get a bigger house anyways. I built my seperate kitchen in my basement, but I am lucky enough to have a wonderful brother who did everything for me. Plus my wonderful husband works for a supermarket chain and was able to get me some of their items that are no longer in use. I was able to save A LOT of money and if you don't have that option it can be quite expensive. I also have a full time job that gave me a nice bonus last year that ended up paying for everything. Thank you job that I hope to quit by June.
You are very fortunate to have such a supportive husband. I was hoping to one day open a store front but when I think of all the additional costs, I think I would rather stay where I am. Rent alone will be a huge amount. My husband now is looking to build a free standing building on our property in the next 5 years and have me just do everything there. You really need to have that business plan, and it may seem like it will take you forever. But you will get it done and you will be successful. I am not getting rich by anymeans off of it, but it will be enough to allow me to quit my job. Good luck!
Thanks for sharing SnLSweetEscapes! It's so nice to get such great advice! I'm just so excited by it all, it's hard not to go full steam ahead and move too quickly. All of you are keeping me under control which I need right now! I need to slow down and do this right!
I also totally agree with Jason. Business plan first. Years ago before we launched our technology business we were considering another route. We spent hours at the library pouring over books, going to local businesses that were doing sort of what we were thinking of doing, we worked with a realtor and found a space in the building that would have been PERFECT for our store and were able to haggle down the lease. But after hours and hours of putting together the business plan we found that the numbers just didnt add up. Plus the potential of a business like what we were considering losing interest in the future was pretty big. So we decided to scrap that plan and go with something else. Good thing too. Around the time we decided NOT to open up shop several places just like what we were going to do opened up. And they were very successful for a couple of years. But then, like our plan showed, the public interest was gone and every.single. one of those shops is now closed. But our technology consulting business is thriving and we are adding new clients every day.
You wont know for sure if your area really can support your type of business unless you put together a plan with all the details first. You might find, like we did, that you can still open up a shop but maybe market it towards a different crowd. Initially we were targeting a younger crowd but now we work solely with big businesses. Young 20 somethings dont have a lot of money but big businesses do. And we are more than happy to take it
Let us know how it goes! I like watching new businesses grow on here. It's really neat. And you'll be a huge resource for other's like you in the future.
If this is something you are serious about, rent a commercial kitchen someplace. See what type of customer base you can get. There may not be a market for what you have to offer. Or there may be a huge market and it may change your plan altogether.
Good luck - I know it is a hard decision to make!
Thanks so much for all of the advice. I'm going to work on my business plan and prepare to rent a commercial kitchen. We will see where it goes from there! Wish me luck!
I also have a full time job that gave me a nice bonus last year that ended up paying for everything. Thank you job that I hope to quit by June.
This is awesome Much success to you.
Good luck with your business plan
Like you I went back and forth for a while on what to do. There wasn't an option for commercial kitchen rentals anywhere within an hour, so it was buy a shop or build a house.
We did our research and realized a cake shop (not bakery) just wouldn't work for our lifestyle- I would have had to add my bedroom to the shop!
So we built the house with the kitchen in it, and it really took the pressure off of me, knowing that I could still pick and choose my work.
We have a 5 year plan as well- we are buying a duplex, converting the kitchen in one side, and doing a showroom/appt only studio there. The health dept is totally on board, so we just have to find the right zoning area someday and we're all set!