Restaurant ownership is not, to put things mildly, for the faint of heart.
Margins are thin to begin with, and are constantly at risk of becoming thinner. Customer tastes, trends and preferences ebb and flow. Supply chain management can make working in a busy air traffic control tower seem like a walk in the park. And we won’t even talk about how the government loves restaurants — not for the food, but because they can levy taxes and fees for everything from signage to restroom lighting.
Yet with this being said, most restaurant owners wouldn’t trade their hectic and stressful life for a dreaded corporate cubicle. It’s not just a job. In many respects, it’s a calling. Restaurants make life better, and it’s hard working, sacrificing and risk-taking restaurant owners who make this happen.
Now, if you’re a restaurant owner then hopefully you’re gratified and inspired by this pat on the back and pep talk — you deserve both. But you also know that, as Morgan Freeman sagely advised in The Shawshank Redemption: “you either get busy living, or get busy dying.” Translated into your world, this means: you either ensure that your restaurant is getting stronger, or you unintentionally but invariably push it in the other direction.
It goes without saying that your only option is to move forward and to that end, here are three clear signs that you need restaurant financing now — not later:
At first glance (and probably second and third as well), this may seem illogical; or at least, counter-intuitive. After all, why would you need restaurant financing if you’re growing, and the cash flow is, well, flowing?
Here’s why: you’ve obviously developed systems and formulas that work; i.e. how to hire the right people, how to delight customers and keep them coming back (and recommending you online and offline), how to control your supply chain costs, and so on. Now isn’t just the ideal time, but it might be the ONLY time that you’ll have this much leverage to expand — perhaps by adding to your existing operations, or launching new location(s).
In the retail world, the worst thing that can happen to a business is when its products are perceived as commodities — i.e. generic and therefore interchangeable with products sold by others. When this happens, customers focus primarily or exclusively on price. Whoever sells them the product at the lowest cost wins the race. Or rather, they lose the race: because competing solely on price is a race to the bottom.
Obviously, you know that your food — and the overall experience you provide, which is a major part of your restaurant — are not commodities. But if your customers and marketplace start to see things this way, then restaurant financing is the get-out-of-the-commodity-bucket lifeline that you need. You can use the funds to refresh or re-build your brand, and ensure that you stand out for all of the right reasons, and customers know that they simply can’t get what you offer from anywhere else.
Waiting until you have all of the working capital you need to purchase inventory or equipment is a Catch-22: you need these assets to generate revenue, but you cannot generate the revenue without the assets.
Restaurant financing solves this dilemma, and puts you in a position to succeed and grow. Just make sure that choose a lender who gives you the freedom to purchase from the vendor of your choice — not theirs.
To learn more about your restaurant financing options, contact the National Business Capital team today. Unlike banks, we’re fine with impaired or bad credit — because we’re far more interested in what restaurant owners are doing now and have planned for the future vs. what may have transpired in the past.
In addition, we offer both secured and unsecured (i.e. no collateral) loans, and we typically only need to see a few months of business history. So what are you waiting for? Get restaurant financing by filling out our two-minute application today.
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Megan is passionate about helping business owners along their journey - providing them with relevant content they can use in their day-to-day operations.