Where to Buy your Food Truck: Rent Vs Lease & New Vs Used


Once the decision to open a food truck has been made, and a detailed, well thought out business plan has been written, the next step in opening a food truck will be to, well, buy a food truck. Of course, buying isn’t the only option.

Food trucks are available for rent and lease as well. Whether a hopeful mobile chef decides to buy or borrow, there are a series of things to consider and various marketplace options.

In the search for the perfect mobile kitchen, researching and understanding local safety, fire, and health department standards is an important first step. Every truck on the road has to meet the rules corresponding to its locale.

Next, a future food truck owner must flesh out what equipment they need to prepare their food, including all necessities but not going overboard. Space on a food truck is limited, so be conservative and only include what is required.

Once a list of specified needs is developed, an ideal floor plan should be created. Of course, depending on where a food truck comes from, it may not match the floor plan exactly, but it is still a good idea to have the best possible layout nailed down just in case the perfect truck comes along or customization is being considered.

This allows the buyer to know what size vehicle they need to fit all essential equipment inside. With the vehicle’s size and a realistic budget in mind, shoppers can narrow down their choices.

In many ways, buying a food truck is like buying a car. A person shopping for their dream car already knows exactly what it should look like, what model it should be, and what specifications should be included.

Approach looking for the perfect food truck the same way and be prepared ahead of time. Also secure funding as soon as possible.

By taking the steps to have investors, a loan, or access to personal savings secured in the beginning of the process of opening a business, a future food truck owner won’t miss out on the ultimate truck due to lack of purchasing power.

Should You Rent, Lease, or Buy Your Food Truck?

Each potential food truck owner is different. Depending on available funding, creditworthiness, and dedication to the business, leasing or renting might be better than buying. Renting can be great for someone planning a temporary project, like a restaurant owner who wants to have a presence at local summer festivals.

Leasing is a good option for people who are not completely sure they want to stay in the business for the long haul. It allows them to experience the day- to-day of food truck operation, test their business model, understand the risks, develop their skills, and start turning a profit before making a huge monetary investment.

When negotiating a lease, make sure there is a purchasing option so that money already invested goes to good use and be prepared for the term’s end by planning where to get the funds by the time they are needed. Whether leasing or renting, shop around and find a truck that fits the needs of the business as renovation won’t be an option.