When I started this journey to open a wine shop, I started writing this blog to share my experiences throughout the process, both good and bad. I mentioned in the beginning that starting a business is hard, well, I just ran into the first real setback. While disappointing, I was warned that this could happen.
In a previous blog post, I explained that I had found a location and had started negotiations with the landlord while doing the legwork to get paperwork, architectural drawings, cost estimates and quotes to finally get the small business loan package submitted. This past Thursday afternoon, I was planning to meet with the contractor and the design firm to get their agreement on plans for the loan officer, when I got the word from my Commercial Agent that the landlord of this location decided to consider another offer. My letter of intent has not been outright declined yet, but there are a few factors that make me believe that it will be very soon. So, instead of finalizing plans for the loan officer, everything came to a halt, at least until I find out if the landlord agrees to move forward with my business.
I’m disappointed. If this location doesn’t work, I will need to start over with drawings, proposals and cost estimates before I can satisfy the loan requirements, an approval process that easily takes 4-6 weeks. There are so many people that need to be willing to work with me and the timeline of the process itself, that it has to be a good match. With every delay, the business opening could be set back for weeks.
I know that Wine Culture is supposed to happen, but until I get the adequate financial resources and can sign a lease, it is going to be a tough process. I still plan to pursue the crowdfunding campaign, but was hoping to have a location to advertise as a selling point when it begins. Maybe I will rethink that plan and see if I have other options. An anonymous Donor or Funder would be a nice option too; just in case anyone knows anyone that would like to go ahead and assist a female veteran, small business owner to get a new business off the ground? Anyone? Just a thought….
Anyway, hopefully I will know in the next day or two if I need to look for a new location, so that I can move forward. The truth is that there have been small victories along the way and I have learned a lot. I think that knowledge will allow for the process to be completed a little quicker the next time. I’m confident that it will all work out. As I stated before, if this is not the right location, a much better one is out there and I will find it soon.
Thank you to those who read the Wine Culture blog posts. Your support really means a lot. I hope that these posts have been informative or at least entertaining. I hope that you follow Wine Culture on social media and will share with other friends and wine lovers. I would also ask that you interact or leave comments, as it helps to grow the community. Thank you for believing in me and this journey. I will not give up easily and I am still very much looking forward to the day of Wine Culture’s grand opening.