Leasing a coffee shop?


New member
Oct 9, 2005
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Hello there,

I have dreamed of owning my own coffee shop for years now, it's absolutely what I want to do with my life. I know I can make it work and I know that I have an idea that has not been explored yet, and I'm positive it will be a huge success.

That said:
I just moved to a new area, it's beautiful and the town is a smaller community college town. I know someone that is going to lease out a shop that is directly across the street from the college. I don't know all of the details yet, but I do know that the lease includes all that is already in the shop (it's completely set up with new appliances, espresso machine, grinders, blenders, furniture... everything, even syrups).

I am going to see it this week and get all of the details. The lease is what I think, pretty spendy. But, the location and the building are awesome. It's a converted victorian home, different sitting rooms, fireplace... everything I want and imagine a cozy coffee house to look and feel like.

Thing is, I don't know enough about the business yet, but if I can manage to pack in a lot of training in the next couple of weeks I can pull it off. My husband is a chef and I have worked as a barista and other customer service jobs all my life, and we both have ended up managing in whatever job we've had. I really believe we can pull this off and make it work.
Other thing is, that I've learned that the last two people who managed this shop walked out mid-lease, not finishing the lease and the payments. This of course leads me to wonder what happened. I know that they offered free wi-fi, maybe their expenses were a little too extravagent...

So my questions start here (finally)

1. Do you think that this is a smart move?
2. How much is too much for a lease?
3. How do I find out what happened?
4. What kind of training do I have to have?
5. Where do I find the training?
6. Do you think that I'd be able to get it all up and running in the matter of maybe a month?

Any other input would be very helpful. Thank you so much.
So far, I'm planning on going to the Coffee Fest in Seattle and attending the free classes, possibly the Barista Workshops and Trainings.
Any advice? Please?


New member
Oct 4, 2005
Sunny Oregon
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Hi NatchraLeigh first change the name get rid of any bad vibes.

The house sounds nice but more for dinning not a quick latte.If its that cozy
People just might hang around nursing that house coffee and asking for a free refill.

Only recently has Starbucks opened new stores with over 600sq ft as they want the volume and with coffee volume is the only way to make money...

I am on the central Oregon coast I bought a sit down coffee shop in biz 20 yrs at the time in a resort shopping center.I sold it 3yrs later and opened a drive-thru on a corner lot I own.I have one employee a shift no matter how busy it is were in the sit down shop I needed four for the busy times.Drive-thrus are self regulating ,one carload at time not 75-100 people standing in line.Yes I make more money now.

The house sounds great if that is your dream....but if you want to pay the rent ,make a living buy a GOING biz with a good past opening from scratch is risky and costly.A twice closed biz is worthless?

I have Coffee bean Int. for my drive-thru out of Portland very good prices,coffee and service.

I am not an expert in coffee shops this is only my option.Good luck.Daniel

( sit down and think out what money you will need to build a solid biz and then).....double it!