What is your guys experience with finding a landlord who would be willing to let you set up a first year haunt in his building in return for a percentage of the profits? And what's a fair percent to give to him-25%, 40%? All I keep getting from realtors is "no, he wouldn't be interested in that, he only wants yearly leases." Obviously, they're gonna tell you that because it effects their commission. Any advice or experience is greatly appreciated
Go around the realtors.
Landlords can claim a loss on buildings and actually benefit from it by NOT renting it out, so you'd have to do better than one years worth of loss compensation from Uncle Sam just to get them to listen.
And NEVER sacrifice the interest in your business to a landlord!! If you do that, they think they can get involved and tell you what to do. And you end up getting screwed because they're smarter at business than you. But if you're determined, NEVER pay more than 20%. I hope you do projections!
Try the Craigslist in your area, sometimes landlords post directly on their, not many realtors bother with craigslist, so go on there and see if you can work out something. Just make sure you abound smart and confident or they'll try to walk all over you and succeed at doing so.
Good luck buddy!
Don't forget to go to your town meetings NOW so you have time to recover and try again if they say no the first time. And have everything figured out, frim parking, to traffic, to emergency exits, building plan, and find ways in which you can claim it will be a benefit to the surrounding area/economy, and get as good at kissing ass as you posibly can! Lol
I only had some luck with green houses or flower shops/yards. They close during our open season so walk in there and ask the owner if they are interested in something like what you are talking about. Base the percentage on sqft and how long you will take up the space.
Don't rely on anyone to get the location for you... I got about 300 No's before I got one maybe.
Best of luck and don't give up!!
One way to show that you can get the rent down is to show the landlord and city that you will be driving people from outside your comunity to the city and with that the will be buying gas, food, and such. If you are in a strip mall that is kind of dead in the evenings then you will be bringing potential customers to the door step of his other tenants during thier off peak hours. You don't think the malls do the Christmas dispay with Santa just to be nice do you, its about driving foot traffic to thier location so they can charge higher rent. I dont like the percentage system most landlord want more than that, set a low base rent calculated buy what you think would be on the lower side of your atendance expectations and them agree to give him a higher rate if you exceed that number. That way you dont get stuck holding the bag for a high rent payment and he feels that there is still something in it for him too. I have a landlord right now that just wants anything in a location that has been vacant for 6 years, $4000 a month for 12 months for 44,000 S.F, It only covers the taxes if that, but he has lost almost $300,000 the last 6 years. This is in a good area of town too. Good luck and make sure its the right place for you, before you sign a lease.
Haunt customers arrive to go into the haunt. they might have to eat something, buy some gas to get home and that is IT! Just like gamblers going to a Riverboat to gamble. Are they going to take a side-trip to see a haunt? Will the Wife and kids come along gambling and decide to see a haunt? No! NEVER!
Government stats say if you have a tourist type business any other different businesses near yours will only at best see a smallpercentage of the haunt's customers and the farther away their business is in walking feet the more that percentage drops.
This information is important so you don't over-sell any potential landlord who might be waiting for his profit from Your Patrons who are supposed to also be finding and supporting his business nearby. When this doesn't happen you find yourself with no location or a re-computed deal involving a bigger chunk of what should be your money.
MY first year I became very frustrated attempting to work with various landlords regarding a locaiton for our Haunt. I actually was able to create a good working relationship with our local State Fairgrounds Agency. After getting our name out and having a solid reputation this year we are finding people more open to talking to us. So definitely look into your state or county fairgrounds. Bldgs and rent tend to be less expensive.
Hope it helps
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