I'm looking to open a Family Entertainment Complex with no prior business experience. What comes first, the lot purchase or the licensing/permits?

Jesselee Leachman Ambitious, Determined, Humorous, Quiet.

April 16th, 2017

I've been working on the details for over a year now. I have a ton of community support from both residents and businesses. The only thing really working against me is my lack of prior business experience. But I really want to do this and my bank is ready to sign over a check, I just need to get paperwork in place first (such as a business plan, insurance, property documents....). I have had conflicting advice on whether I should acquire the land first, or get the licensing and permits first.


April 17th, 2017

When you find a lot you'd like to purchase, prepare a contract that has multiple 'subject-to' clauses. I'll purchase lot for $x dollars and terms, subject to acquiring [very specific] business licenses, zoning, food, liquor; and subject to [very specific] financing, terms, repayments, interest rate; and subject to acquiring building permits. This way, if something doesn't work out, you're not on the hook to purchase the lot. This is how builders and developers work. Seek an experienced business and real estate related attorney as suggested by Pamela.

Pamela Schuur at Attorney at Law

April 16th, 2017

I would be surprised if you could get permits before you own the property; it is hard for business and government to give you permission to build on land you don't have the right to build/operate on. I recommend buying the land first - it will be an asset no matter how your plans evolve. Pamela M. Schuur, Attorney at Lawpamela.schuur@comcast.net408.483.6810 Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S7, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone