Setting up shop ‒ budget ideas for a new cafe

Category: General 109

You have the premises, the lease, and the plan, but how can you save money now it is time to kit out your new cafe business? Setting up shop can be pricey but there is no reason to pay top prices when there are easy ways to save money on fixtures, fittings, kitchen items, furniture, and crockery.

Plan and plan again

Save money by planning the layout before you make any decisions. Research everything you need and draw up a mock ‘footprint’ of how you want the premises to operate, with the concept and the menu being good places to start.

Do whatever you can yourself

If you are even remotely handy with a paint brush, don’t pay a decorator large amounts of money to do the job for you. If you don’t feel confident to finish it yourself perfectly, do the basics and leave the finishing touches to a professional.

Call in favors

Is your nephew’s friend a plumber, or your old school mate a kitchen fitter? Perhaps your auntie’s neighbor is an electrician? Call in favors by asking people you know to work for mate’s rates in return for a free sandwich every time they visit the cafe, within reason of course!


If you have never kitted out a business before your instinct might be to go to normal hardware stores, but there are many wholesale stores dedicated to offering lower prices; for example, Fridge Freezer Direct supply commercial fridge freezers. Direct supply companies will also be able to provide you with the best knowledge and advice about which is the best option for you. Before you buy a commercial fridge freezer or other appliance you should make yourself aware of food hygiene rules and regulations, as this may affect the choices you make.

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Rental options

Some larger items are cheaper to rent than to buy, even in the long term. Italian coffee machines, for example, require an extremely large outlay. While they remain an asset of sorts, it may be more financially sensible to rent one, especially for the first year.

Furniture and crockery

Depending on the style you are after, visiting house clearances and secondhand shops can save a lot of money and result in an eclectic collection of tables, chairs, plates, cups and bowls.

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