top 5 restaurant budgeting mistakes

And the questions to answer so you don't make them.

Starting a restaurant in Vancouver is super exciting, but it can also be a bit of a money pit, especially when you're trying to stick to a budget for building the place.

It's really important to get why costs often shoot up more than expected and to ask yourself some key questions early on to avoid headaches later.

Here's a look at the top 5 reasons why building a restaurant can end up costing more than planned, plus some critical questions you might forget to ask until it's too late.

Contracting Construction

1. Frequent Plan Revisions

BjornBar Restaurant

It's quite typical for Vancouver restaurant entrepreneurs to adjust their visions as the project progresses. Flexibility is a strength, yet substantial modifications during the build phase can dramatically inflate expenses.

Key Questions:

Have you thoroughly vetted your final concept and design against your business objectives?

How prepared are you to resist the urge to modify your plans once construction has commenced?

2. Underestimating Kitchen and Interior Costs

The kitchen is the heart of your restaurant and kitting it out with all the right gear (and making sure it all fits) costs a pretty penny. Often, people don't set aside enough money for this from the start.

Key Questions:

Have you compiled a comprehensive inventory of required kitchen equipment and assessed their spatial integration within your design?

Are there contingency plans for scaling your equipment needs based on budgetary constraints?

construction plan

3. Compliance with Regulations and Permits

BjornBar Restaurant

The labyrinth of local Vancouver regulations, health, safety codes, and the permitting process can be formidable. Errors or omissions in this area can lead to costly corrective actions.

Key Questions:

Are you fully versed in all Vancouver-specific regulations and permits required for your restaurant?

Who will ensure compliance throughout the build phase?

4. Construction Delays

Delays are almost a given in construction, with each day potentially adding to your costs. In Vancouver, common delays are due to weather, supply chain issues, permit approvals, or labor shortages.

Key Questions:

What allowances have you incorporated into your timeline for potential delays?

Has your team established a thorough risk management plan to tackle unexpected setbacks?

construction plan

5. Insufficient Emergency Funds

BjornBar Restaurant

Optimism should not overshadow practical budgeting. Unexpected costs are almost inevitable in construction, and a lack of a financial safety net can significantly push your project over budget.

Key Questions:

Do you have a robust emergency fund for unforeseen expenses?

Does your budget realistically reflect the scale and complexity of your Vancouver restaurant project?

It's Okay To Not Have All The Answers.

Launching a restaurant in Vancouver transcends passion and dreams; it demands meticulous financial and logistical planning. It's perfectly normal to not have all the answers initially, highlighting the value of partnering with an experienced project manager.

Engaging with a knowledgeable contractor, like Mercury Contracting, offers the expertise necessary to navigate these challenges efficiently, ensuring your project not only remains within budget but also aligns flawlessly with your vision.

Mercury Contracting's proficiency in managing Vancouver restaurant construction projects can be the key to avoiding common financial pitfalls and achieving your dream restaurant without compromising on quality or financial goals.

construction plan