Food Trucks: Deciding Between Buying And Renting

Food Trucks: Deciding Between Buying And Renting

While starting a food truck business is more cost effective compared to a restaurant, there are risks that are involved like with any new business venture. This is particularly true if your food concept is new and you are yet to sell any food to real customers. Thank God for food trucks for rent because these will give you a cheap alternative to sinking your life savings into a new venture.

Rented food trucks offer the flexibility of putting your menus and strategic ideas to the test before you can make the decision of whether or not to operate a truck business for the next few years. The good news is that the only risk involved is the cost of renting the truck. Should the venture fail, you can always return the truck to the rental company. On the other hand, if it succeeds, you can purchase it and gain full ownership rights.

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How much does a food truck make?

This is probably the most common question asked by people looking to invest in food trucks. Honestly, it’s complicated. Why? Because while some businesses will succeed, some will fail, others will stop and others will simply break even. The main reason for the above is because the returns are sometimes not worth the effort that put. But like any other business, if you work hard enough at it, the profits are good.

What considerations should be made before customizing your truck?

This is a business like any other, so you have to get some things organized before you get started on customizing your truck. The most basic consideration, other than the budget, is the type of equipment you will need. This will determine the size of the food truck. Equipment you might want to budget for includes a fridge, sinks, cooler, dispensers, flat griddle, hot dog roller and cuisine based equipment. These are basic, and if you plan on more flexibility to expand your menu, you should consider additional equipment.

The manufacturer you choose to customize your truck should have experience working in the health department you will be operating in. This is because it is the manufacturer’s responsibility to handle the approval process with the health department. But then again, considering it’s your business, don’t completely rely on third parties to take care of things for you.

Who should buy a truck? What are the advantages of buying vs. renting?

Buying a food truck is a huge investment of your money, hence should not be taken lightly. Before you can take this step, it’s important that you understand the climatic nature of such a business venture. For people who are just new to the market, buying a new food truck is not recommended as you could set yourself up for huge losses. Renting a truck will buy you time to access the market and what it’s like to operate a food truck. It also gives you time to learn the tricks to maximize on your profits.

Who should rent a food truck? What are the advantages of renting vs. buying?

Renting is a great option for those who are new to the business. Those hosting events can also rent food trucks rather than caterers, as this a cheaper option and also allows guests to mingle while they wait in line for their turn.

Some of the advantages of renting food trucks compared to that of purchasing include:

• Unbeatable flexibility – Rental food trucks offer a level of flexibility than new trucks can ever hope to provide. For instance, you can tweak your menus until you get the one menu that will be a hit among your customers. In addition, you can experiment with different market strategies. Last but not least, rental food trucks give you ample time to decide if that’s what you want to do for the next 5-6 years. And to think all you have to risk is the rental cost!

• Everything is included in the package – Contrary to what you may think, the rental cost comes with everything. Okay, not the menus, but it does come with cooking and maintenance appliances. Some companies even handle processing licenses and permits. Makes you how better it can get.

• Use money saved for other parts of your business – Renting a food truck leaving you with enough savings that can be used to hire new staff, buy food supplies or pay for the marketing campaigns.

When can you take the leap from a rental to a purchased food truck?

Generally speaking, the best time to take this leap is after two or three years of experience in the industry. By this time, you will have learnt almost everything, if not everything, there is to know. Competitors and how to handle them, mechanical aspect of the trucks, market behavior and whether or not the business has some sort of predictability among other things.

All factors considered, buying a food truck is not always the better choice. The risks involved are too many and it could take a while before your investment starts reaping profits. Renting, on the other hand, offers more flexibility while minimizing on the risks.

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