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Thread Starter 
I know that the whole time a shop was just a dream for me I loved reading the posts and especially seeing the photos of people that were putting theirs together... so now that I'm off and running I'll share my story too!

About 3 years ago my mom and I put a commercially licensed kitchen in an empty addition room on her house. This was a huge help to me as I was a single mom living in an apartment at the time. The only downsides are that it took 2 years to build because they insisted on tile, granite, and stainless steel (making the thing a b***h to clean) and that her husband (10 years now, NOT my dad) is a total wierdo. Well, goofy step dad got in a decent car wreck that totaled his car a couple of months ago and has been home so it has been quite interesting to say the least. They kept cutting back the hours that I could be there and making me polish more so I said THIS is the push I need, I'm going for my own shop!

Over the last 3 months we have been serious about 3 different locations. The first one was right next door to our only Bed Bath and Beyond and in the same small strip mall as our only David's Bridal was being built (gonna be crazy busy - the girls here FLY to Seattle to go to DB!) but they wouldn't budge below $3 a square foot and the place was just a retail hole so we had to walk away.

The second store was right next door to Nordstrom's, had lots of windows, and good traffic visibility. The price was right at $1.60/sq ft and we even signed the lease and paid the deposits. Then the contractor's estimate came in. $330,000 to remodel the (previously office) space and the dang unit only had 50 amps running to it and we needed 240+... the whole building of 8 units only had 400 amps! After we backed out and got our money refunded we figured out we needed a place that was already set up for a kitchen. But going into a location where a bakery just failed was no way to start, right? So pizza parlors it is!!

We found one and put an offer down, but he wanted more $. Then we found our new home. It had been a Papa John's then a different, private pizza place. Originally listed for $170k, we were able to get it for $100k with the owner financing $75k at ZERO PERCENT INTEREST. Even this deal went back and forth several times and just last week I was convinced that it was all over (and I wasn't going to try for a new location for at least a year - it had been three months of ups and downs already) when we dropped our final offer on Sunday night and didn't hear back till Thursday... with a yes!

So long story, well, long, we signed all the papers yesterday to buy the guts of the business and transfer the lease. Man those were some heavy checks!

Tomorrow morning we go in to clean the place from top to bottom. For remodeling we have to paint, get new signs, rearrange the kitchen furniture, install a display case, and install a drive thru window for espresso (and the machines).

Well I was GOING to post pix but apparently I left the camera at the store! I'll get them tomorrow I promise...

(thanks for listening icon_smile.gif)