How much money do you need to open a coffee shop?

Having a coffee shop is a dream come true to people who love hanging around with friends, reading books and the strong smell of freshly brewed coffee. But running one can be a trying endeavor, especially if you are brand new in the industry and have little experience in customer’s service in general. 

To make it a rewarding and fun experience, research is one of the most important things you can do and it has to become your priority. From expenses to décor, you’ll have to think of a whole experience for your future book reading friends loving future customers and the tally can rise as fast as you can snap your fingers. 


The best way to ride the turmoil of events is to register everything you need and have at hand a business loan calculator like the one Camino Financial provides. This way, you can know exactly what you’ll need to apply for a loan and begin your journey. 


Keep in mind that, depending on where you are and the kind of materials you are planning to use, costs will vary. So instead of telling you exactly how much money you’ll need, you’ll find the key things you’ll need to spend on.

Planning a business

Like any other company, your coffee shop will need a business plan that includes at least three possible locations, target audience according to your location, a theme, market research, pricing, staff, risks and a menu ready to be offered. Don’t forget to factor in working capital for the first months, when your name and reputation are still unknown and your financial projections reach your balance point. Though this seems like a cero spending part, you’ll find out that going to competitor’s coffee shops, scouting for location and even putting time aside to write it will translate to money.

Reshaping your space

Location will be key, but you’ll also need to think about the perception of your clients. Think about every place you felt comfortable and happy to stay around spending money on hot beverages and start adding in up. Remember that you’ll have to do a little constructor work to have a nice and new space so think about: a paint job, electric tuning, art for the walls, comfy seats, useful tables, a good counter, a showcase for delicious pastry, a cash register, a fancy machine that can make at least two coffee cups at once, fridges, running water, a cellar and audio equipment. 


This will become one of the last things to purchase but the first priority when quoting your expenses. They are the life and soul of your place, so make sure you try for every option available and choose the ones that have a good ratio between price and quality. Buying in bulk can help you save some money but make sure you only do this with sweetener and napkins, those things that don’t expire. Think that you’ll need cutlery, tableware, cups and glasses, kitchen tools, metal straws, shakers and any other amenity that you need when you sit down for a coffee and a bite. Then factor in the price of coffee flavor syrup, coffee beans, milk, your pastry supplier or the materials to bake those pastries, soft drinks and even water. 

Human factor

A small coffee shop can be run with as little as two people, but take into account the amount of work required, from brewing the coffee, charging for it, arranging the showcase, clearing tables, cleaning spaces and, of course, to serve customers. Also, remember that, either you hire an expert barista or you become one. Training is essential if you want to stand out and offer quality in flavor and service. Also, it would be a good idea to consider time off and, depending on the growth rhythm of your business, you’ll need to have a few resumes under your sleeve. 


All of these categories must be in your business plan in order to get a close enough idea of the amount of money you’ll need to get started. Research among friends, the caffeine junkies at home and successful coffee shops for best practices and, of course, pricings on everything. Once you have this, you’ll be able to factor in a business loan calculator to see how much money you’ll have to include in your business projections as loan repayment. Are you ready to take on the java world?

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