On today's Food Network episode of "Buy This Restaurant," expert restaurant broker, Keith Simpson came to Charlotte, N.C., to help best friends Jody and Rhonda fulfill their bucket list dream of opening their own restaurant. Inspired by another of their friends, who was diagnosed with a terminal illness, who they helped fill out her bucket list; the two decided to work on their own list.
With no previous restaurant experience, they plan to open a sports-theme restaurant. Jody and Rhonda root for different teams, but this will not stop them from their ardent desire. They are looking to open a casual sports themed restaurant with a bar area that will be a great meeting place. The pair each has their own families and will be using savings to open the restaurant. With an all-in budget of $200,000, they cannot afford to lose and depend on Keith to guide them in the right direction. Keith will be showing them three spaces, and only one will be their choice.
The first place they checked out was a highly successful bistro, called Passion8 Bistro, currently a dinner only business, in a quiet neighborhood ten miles from Charlotte. The owners are moving the business to downtown Charlotte. The asking price includes all the equipment, but not the business. With good bones and infrastructure, it is a great place for a starting business. With an asking price of $60,000, and $1,100 a month for rent. Keith believes they can get the place even cheaper than the asking price, but with renovations, their first-year cost will be $93,000, leaving them with $107,000 working capital and a return investment in one year.
The second place was a vacant gas station about a mile from downtown Charlotte. Keith told them to keep an open mind because of the potential. The landlord will install the plumbing and much of the infrastructure for them. The rent is $1,750 a month, and although they both were apprehensive, Keith showed them what it could look like using his tablet. He opened their eyes to the huge potential of the place. With $50,000 to $75,000 to complete the renovations, the project will take up their entire budget, but their return will be seen in about 18-20 months, but the incentives from the city for landscaping and the landlord incentives, will be theirs throughout.
The third and last place was seen undercover, as it was a working establishment; a casual dining restaurant in a shopping center in the Charlotte suburb of Matthews. The establishment was called Skinnyz Bar & Grille, with an asking price of $125,000. With rent of $3,600 a month, but the business is ready for customers immediately, as it is a thriving business, with a comparable menu to their expectations and doing about $400,000 a year. Keith told them to stay away from greens and blues, because they are very cold colors. The tiki atmosphere had to go, if they decided on this place. He then showed them the cosmetic changes he proposed. The renovations would cost about $30,000 to $40,000 and the asking price of $125,000 and $43,000 annually for rent. They're all-in price of $208,000 would be returned in 15-18 months.
After sleeping on their decision, the next day, they decided to eliminate the gas station, the decision was the third place, and they managed to get the place for only $60,000. Now they had $100,000 for renovations, start-up and working capital. The new place is currently called Moochies Tavern.
Keith advises viewers to check here to see how the restaurant is doing since he brokered the deal. If you liked what you read, please Subscribe, and you will never miss another post from this Television Examiner. Thanks!