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Hello! :)

I'm in process of opening my first coffee shop. Found a location but it is not secured yet.

I'm not losing my time and therefore I'm on a look out for designer. Which is all Greek to me!


I found couple of designers I like but my budget is limited.


My question is: What sort of budget do you think I should have for my design and fitting out? How much should I be prepared to spend for tables and chairs? Lighting? Plumbing and electricial?


I know it's hard to tell without seeing the location but I would love to know some kind of quideline so at least I can have some idea.


The store is empty (only with toilet) in quite nice comditions. It is 540 sq ft. Third of it is for storage.


Thank you for any answers!

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Hello and welcome :)


I think it is impossible to cost without knowing what kind of style you are looking for. I have seen very basic coffee shops (with top end machines, grinders, beans etc) that have been kitted out for very little cost. Are you looking for designers and shop fitters, or doing it yourself? Have you decided upon the equipment you are going for, the type of coffee shop customer you are aiming your business at?


There's such a lot to decide upon.


Good luck - keep us updated :)

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It's located in Rickmansworth (close to Watford).


In terms of equipment I have pretty good idea want I want, where I get it and how much it cost. What I Have no clue is everything else.

I have a vision of my coffee shop beiing modern, simple but cosy. I like natural colours and natural materials such as wood and using plants as decoration.


The shop is not too big, I guess I could fit in 20 covers. Because it's small I want to have designer so we can make the best use of the space. I could do some work myself but not completely. I can't do any plumbing etc. Screwing some shelves and counter would be ok.


If someone have an idea about cost of fitting out and material for commercial use would be super helpful!


Thank you :)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Michaela


Firstly, congratulations on finding a location that you seem happy with.


As mentioned, costings are very difficult to estimate without firm details. I've done both ends of the spectrum - paying top money for design, project management & professional tradesmen to fit out a 1600sq ft unit(around £100k plus equipment), and then starting again with a 650sq ft unit but on a small budget where we fitted out the shop ourselves, using the minimum required professionals to carry out the necessary things needed to meet legal requirements (less than £8k plus equipment).


Furniture - depends what you want really. Our original shop, we spent around £15k on new seating with sofas and tub chairs, but decided to sell these off when putting our new place together and but used furniture comprising wooden tables and regular wooden chairs which cost me £250 and a 150 miles round trip to collect them. The only things we done was to recover the seat pads with material to match the colour scheme of the shop.


Toilet - do you need to make this available to the public? Sounds harsh, but if your council decide you do then you'll find you spend an awful lot of time dealing with toilet issues throughout the day which is not fun, especially when it gets messy! It's possible that depending on how close your unit if to a public bathroom you may not need to have public facilities, as this is the same regulation that allows outlets in shopping centre food courts to run without each having a toilet. You'd need to clarify this with the council building regs dept for their thoughts on this. If you do need it, then there's a likelihood you will need to have a full disabled faciltiity which will take up much more floorspace than a standard toilet, although you would be entitled to have it as a shared able bodied/disabled toilet.


Have you compiled a business plan yet? If not, you really need to do so no matter how small your business is. You will need to make sure you include a variable fitout cost to show how long it will take you to cover the cost of fitting out, let alone when you'll be able to start making profit. I'd recommend buying the book "Setting Up and Managing Your Own Coffee Bar" by John Richardson and Hugh Gilmartin to help you with these things.


I hope some of this helps!

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If I went into a coffee shop and it didn't have a toilet it would be the first and last time I ever visit it.


Please don't take my suggestion as anything offensive, I'm just suggesting that if there is a bathroom very, very close by, then most customers will be happy with this. If memory serves, if a bathroom is needed then it has to be suitable for disabled use which is a minimum 2 square metres which will be an awful lot of floor space lost in such a small unit.


My shop has 7 tables, of which we would lose 2 if we were required to install facilities. If this was to happen, the business would not be able to survive as we wouldn't have the capacity required.


Michaela appears here to have even less space than me, so I just want to make clear to her to financial pressures which may dictate the layout of her shop.

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