A vending machine business can be started on a really low budget so it is best to start off slowly and take on less risk. You can then invest more heavily once you start earning some profit and decide that vending is definitely a business that you want to be in.
When it comes to determining the amount of capital that is required to start a vending business you need to take more into account than just the costs that you will face up to the point where you start doing business. You also need to consider the operating expenses that you will have over the first six months while your profits are still low.
If you start out full time then you may also need to set aside funds to cover your living costs for a period of six to twelve months until your business becomes profitable.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the vending machine business startup costs that entrepreneurs in this industry typically face.
The amount of startup funding needed will vary greatly depending on the kind of machines that you want to start off with.
One trick to starting off on a shoestring budget is to start with candy vending machines which can usually be bought very cheaply on online auction sites for around US$150 or less each. These machines are cheap, simple to operate and candy and gum balls offer a great profit margin for little effort. Buy them in lots of one, two or three at a time and slowly grow your business as you find suitable locations.
If you do want to start out with larger, electronic vending machine equipment that vends snacks and hot or cold beverages then you are looking at much larger startup costs. Depending on what equipment you already have and the scope of your plans you will have to spend a certain amount on kitting out your home office. You will likely require a desk, filing cabinets, a PC, printer, Internet connection, phone connection, stationery and possibly other office equipment as well.
To service your route effectively you will need a suitable vehicle. Depending on the kind of machines that you operate you may not be able to get away with using your own car and you may have to consider leasing a vehicle. You may require a larger van or light truck for transporting machines and stock and you might even require a vehicle with a refrigeration compartment.
Professional Fees, Licenses and Permits
You will be applying for licenses and permits in order to set up a legal operation that is in compliance with local regulations. You may also require the services of an accountant, an attorney or other professionals during the process of setting up your vending business.
Don’t forget that most of the time the machines that you are likely to purchase are empty and you will therefore need to buy stock for them. This can represent a considerable startup cost at first as you will certainly be looking to buy your inventory in bulk in order to save money.
Marketing and Branding
In order to get started making money with vending machines you will need to secure your first few locations. The initial marketing of your vending business may require some spending on advertising. used vending machines
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