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raminturkey

Want to open a Past Restaurant in Kusadasi

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Hello to all and thank you in advance for reading and replying,

I want to open a restaurant where we specialize only in hambergers and pastas (of the most popular flavor and recipes). I really don't know where to start. Should I rent a place or buy a restaurant? I am an  American citizen. I know partnership is not advised so I am staying away from that. Will residency and work permit be a problem? I will, of course, hire a few Turks to help me as employees, but I'll be the only one managing and cooking (with all the recipes). Is there any website featuring "for sale" restaurants? My receipts are most favored here in USA. Thank you again. Posted Image

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Be VERY, and I mean VERY careful in buying in to any business in Turkey. In fact I would recommend not doing it at all.  The previous or present owner will not tell you about anything negative about his or here business, except perhaps to gain your confidence by giving you a little token negative info (to feign honesty and transparency). You will hear mostly positive reports about how well the business is doing. Don't believe a word of it.

 

If you buy a place, buy it "assets only." That is, the tables, chairs, oven, etc... At least you'll actually have something to sell if (or in my opinion when) things go bad.

 

Or buy the building. If your business goes bad, you can rent the building to somebody else. And again, you'll have a tangible asset no matter what goes wrong.

 

Owning a business does not automatically give you a work permit. Unfortunately, if you talk to a Turkish lawyer, they may speak very confidently that they can get you one, and in the end you might not get one (after paying them thousands of dollars).

 

If what I said was wrong, someone please reply and correct what I said.

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I agree with you Ken.Unfortunately raninturkey,owning a business does not allow you to work and seeing as it's a job/business 1000's of Turks do,it's very doubtfull you would get one.

If you were seen by the Polis/Zabita,either cooking or just wiping tables,there would be a strong chance you would be whisked away & out of the country within 24 hours,with a ban that could be up to 5 years.

A similar thing happened to 2 English ladies we knew who were caught on Bodrums cctv,just talking to folk as they walked past a cafe ,they were removed & on a plane to the UK next day with a 3 year ban + they have to make a hand written request to the Turkish Embassy in London asking to be allowed to return.

Sorry to be so negative but none of us would like to se you sink laods of money to just lose it overnight.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

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Thank you Ken and Redders for your answers. I do appriciate it.

I am just running out of ideas. My wife and I really like to live in Turkey, at least for 6 months out of a year. Is there anything we can do?

Regards.

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Here's what I did. I bought property in the US, and hired a property management company to manage the properties and rent them out. They take 10% off the top, and after expenses, put the profits in my US bank account. Besides a US military retirement, I live on that. The income is in US dollars, and the US dollar is very strong against the Turkish lira right now (and it usually is). It is also more stable.
 
I just take out what I need from the bank machine (over several days if it's a big expense). And I rent here. The rental prices, if you find the right place in town, can be very cheap. In most cities and towns there's an area where the Turks live, rather than the expats. Rents are much cheaper in these areas and you get a lot more for your money.
 
I don't want to tell you want to do, but I think the advice "DO NOT BUY A BUSINESS IN TURKEY AS A FOREIGNER" is very good advice. Not only because of the dangers involved, but because the typical Turkish business requires workers (and owners) to work an obscene amount of hours during the day just to get by. I salute the Turks, wow, they work some incredible hours, from opening to closing, often seven days a week. This is what you would be competing against.
 
Invest your money into something in the USA, like a rental property, that you can pay somebody to manage, and live off of the proceeds in Turkey.
 
What Redders said is absolutely true. If you open a business as a foreigner, and do well, you'll be a target for every anonymous caller to the Zabita. The Zabita is like a police force but they enforce city ordinances. If somebody has the right connections, or if they find anything you are doing wrong, your business is likely to get a visit from the Zabita and fined, closed, or whatever. 
 
Forget any ideas about how business is done in the USA. Forget any ideas about how you might bring business ideas from the USA and use them to be fantastically successful in Turkey. There is a saying "burası Turkiye," which means "this place is Turkey." The phrase is used to explain everything which is strange, different, or outright wrong in the country as opposed to other countries. And about how things work here, things which are not necessarily fair or which don't necessarily make any sense.
 
You will be in a completely different environment, in a place where all of your competitors have the upper hand and the connections with local government. The cards will be stacked against you.
 
Again I invite whoever else to give another perspective, I am only speaking to my own experience and the experience of others I know.

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That's good advice Ken!  The only thing I can think of for you to do, Ramin, is some kind of job on the internet, for a company NOT based in Turkey, where you wouldn't strictly be employed in Turkey & not pay taxes here.  I think this has been mentioned before in an earlier thread (??).

 

Good luck ! :)

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Hi, me and my husband are the owners of a restaurant in Alanya.

Regarding the latest rules I strongly suggest you to contact your embassy in Turkey, if you are planning to start a restaurant.

You need a work permit, and check the rules of the local Zabitha and cityhall regulations.

 

First rent a place, and put in the contract that the owner can't sell the facility for a couple of years, many people rent a place, and after a few months they have to leave, because the owner of the shop sold his property.

 

NEVER take a Turkish partner, doesn't matter who it is, even if you know this person for years.

My husband took somebody inside our place when we started up, he grew up with him from 3 years old.

He was devistated when he found out, but we did fight very hard to survive this part.

We did, it was hard, long working days from 09.00 untill 00.00, sometimes later.

Also you have little private time.

 

As a foreigner, when your business is very well, other restaurant owners can get jealous.

 

Before you rent a place, check if there is an apartment complex above.

All apartment owners must agree that you can open a restaurant.

If just 1 person is against, you will get a problem, not receiving your license.

Probably all the time this person will call to the Zabitha, or even the police, for small things even when you receive all papers.

 

Be carefull with your workers, problems as stealing, lying, drinking alcohol, or not showing up even after a few days ... it all can happen.

They think totally different then us, regarding doing business. For them it is ' they come for holiday to Turkey, so they can eat what we offer in the menu' .. forget!

You need to have some specialities on your menucard which other places don't offer themselves.

Always think what you can do better, offer something new.

First go check all restaurants in the neighbourhood what they offer, and the prices they charge.

Organise live music evenings, with also that ' little thing extra'.

 

If possible, try to have family inside your restaurant as workers. 

The first year is very hard, the construction and all other costs are very expensive, the licenses etc.

The second year is hard, but the place starts to be known by many people, and they bring their friends and family also.

 

To let a restaurant 'turn', minimum 500 lira a day must be earned. 

We have a 390 m2 place, at the moment 1 cook ( June 1st the 2nd cook will start and dishwasher) , 2 waiters, 1 helper, and my husband and me. 

For workers sigorta must be paid, electric, and here in Alanya all workers have to go to a special course for a clean place/rules to follow. It costs 60 lira each worker.

 

Every day we check the toilets, it is really important to keep them clean, clients really appreciate this part, your cook must be the best.

post-2347-0-63234700-1399406819_thumb.jp

 

People need to find you on the internet, Facebook and Tripadvisor are very good for this part.

A free website, like Blogger, is a perfect way to show what you are doing, and put Google plus on it.

Google plus will guard your visitors to your place, when they have GPRS on their mobile phones.

 

So far this information.. if you need more, you can send us a private message :)

 

 

 

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NEVER take a Turkish partner, doesn't matter who it is, even if you know this person for years.My husband took somebody inside our place when we started up, he grew up with him from 3 years old.He was devistated when he found out, but we did fight very hard to survive this part.

 Found out what? What happened? Did you get screwed too?

 

Always think what you can do better, offer something new.First go check all restaurants in the neighbourhood what they offer, and the prices they charge.Organise live music evenings, with also that ' little thing extra'.

 One comment on that... if you're doing anything that can be copied, it will be copied. If you come out with a new, fantastic menu item which brings the crowds in, before long every restaurant on the block will be offering the same thing. Thank you RememberMeAntalya foro that comment, if you are ever in Alanya and want to see how to properly run a restaurant as a foreigner, go to the Remember Me Restaurant.

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Hi guys ,

 

I really couldn't help staying away from this topic and putting in a few lines . Only last year I was all set to open up an Indian restaurant some place nice in Turkey. Soon I realized the bottle necks and multiple issues, particularly when you are a foreigner while dealing with the Turkish staff can get quite complicated at times. Thanks to the forum members here and like always brilliant advice from Ken saved me from a disaster .  For some reason I still carry this dream to open up a restaurant maybe in some other country that offers fair environment . well I wouldn't even mind starting with another cuisine perhaps Pastas or some exotic burgers " home style".

 

Ramin, I think there are many other disciplines that you could explore in Turkey, besides opening up a restraint. But I would certainly like to live off rental income if I had the chance .

 

Best Luck !

Raj

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Hi guys , I really couldn't help staying away from this topic and putting in a few lines . Only last year I was all set to open up an Indian restaurant some place nice in Turkey. Soon I realized the bottle necks and multiple issues, particularly when you are a foreigner while dealing with the Turkish staff can get quite complicated at times. Thanks to the forum members here and like always brilliant advice from Ken saved me from a disaster .  For some reason I still carry this dream to open up a restaurant maybe in some other country that offers fair environment . well I wouldn't even mind starting with another cuisine perhaps Pastas or some exotic burgers " home style".  Ramin, I think there are many other disciplines that you could explore in Turkey, besides opening up a restraint. But I would certainly like to live off rental income if I had the chance . Best Luck !Raj

I hear you loud and clear, Raj. Thanks for sharing your thought. Ramin

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Found out what? What happened? Did you get screwed too?

 

 

I assume that you are talking about how many restaurant workers go to Kuşadası, or other resorts, for the summer from Eastern Turkey. They work cheaply, and they are not the typical Turks you usually meet.

 

 

One comment on that... if you're doing anything that can be copied, it will be copied. If you come out with a new, fantastic menu item which brings the crowds in, before long every restaurant on the block will be offering the same thing.

 

Thank you RememberMeAntalya foro that comment, if you are ever in Alanya and want to see how to properly run a restaurant as a foreigner, go to the Remember Me Restaurant.

 

@ Ken

 

The childhood friend of my husband took much money behind our back, he didn't do what he promissed us to do as he said at the beginning.

These things almost did cost us the restaurant itself ..but we managed.

Just 2 days before somebody came in, and he told us he would like to become a partner, but the moment I looked in his eyes, and at his behaviour I knew it would be a big mistake. I have learned to listen to my intuition, and also my husband is trusting me this part now.

 

Also when a restaurant owner is on his/her own, you can do what you think is right and in the best way.

With a partner next to you, all of this is so so difficult. 

 

Workers : we had all problems, from drinking personel, untill not showing up the next day without any reason at all, they just left.

We don't except they are harassing women, we want them to treat all clients with respect. 

Youw workers can 'make' or 'break' the place.

 

Regarding the menu : we offer some typical things from Holland which other restaurants cant even get here, they are imported or brought to us by friends or family. Also our cook chef puts all his power inside our kitchen, and he sometimes comes up with surprises regarding menu's he makes.

They are sold as 'daily chef special's ' .. it is not only what this chef is creating with his hands in the kitchen, also his character and head must be thinking the best for his workplace. Last year we had a chef cook, who left after 23.00 anyway, it didn't matter how many customers were still inside our restaurant.

Our current chef cook comes in the morning, has a break in the afternoon, and goes home when the last clients are leaving our place.

Think about that a really good chef cook costs about 3500-4000 TL a month. 

Yes expensive, but when your food is very good, also clients come back several times after their first visit.

Clean toilets, clean kitchen and good food, and good service, friendly staffmembers ..it all can bring you a good mouth to mouth recommendation.

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I assume that you are talking about how many restaurant workers go to Kuşadası, or other resorts, for the summer from Eastern Turkey. They work cheap, and they are not the typical Turks you usually meet. You'll have problems with them that you wouldn't have with the typical Turk.

 

 

 

I wish you luck ram. Personally, I'd stay away. The market is saturated in places like Kusadasi and it's hard to be successful. 

 

Ken I found your comments rather rude. Ok, some of the seasonal workers are problematic, but many of them work incredibly hard for very low wages, while living in pitiful conditions provided by their boss. Many "typical" Turks (I'm thinking of my ex here), on the contrary, would be too stuck up to lower themselves to waiting tables or work seven days a week, even if they are students or unemployed.

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I wish you luck ram. Personally, I'd stay away. The market is saturated in places like Kusadasi and it's hard to be successful. 

 

Ken I found your comments rather rude. Ok, some of the seasonal workers are problematic, but many of them work incredibly hard for very low wages, while living in pitiful conditions provided by their boss. Many "typical" Turks (I'm thinking of my ex here), on the contrary, would be too stuck up to lower themselves to waiting tables or work seven days a week, even if they are students or unemployed.

Yes it is hard to be successful. That's why I wrote, regarding first checking the area before people are starting something.

About workers : yes some hotels are offering their personel bad rooms to sleep, even under the hotel, thin matrasses, and smelling very bad.

Our staffmembers are all from Alanya area, last year we had some persons out of the city, after the season it took 2 cleaning women 2 days to clean the apartment we did rent for them. 

Hotelstaff is working very hard, from 07.00-15.00, then little break, and starting again 18.00-00.00, even sometimes later. 

 

It is a hard, intensive job.. but you meet different people. Listen to your intuition, it is the best way.

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For me it was not rude what Ken said, some of us had 1 or more experiences before in his/her life, which we dont want happening to other people.

We had our share too, and we are still fighting to get out of this problem. 

Life in Turkey is different then in Europe or anywhere else in the world, what I write now is not meant negatively.

Doing business in Turkey is keeping your eyes open, 24 hours a day. Following your place and workers 24 hours daily, day in day out, 365 days a year. 

 

A nice day / weekend to everybody, greetings from all of us out of heavenly clouded,rainy Alanya!

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I appreciate everyone's "honest opinion". I changed my mind about opening a restaurant and I am taking Ken’s advice.

I don't want to deviate from my original topic and get into "politics" but I feel I should say something. First, I do appreciate Ken and others like him for all their help on this website-it is truly invaluable. Life is hard everywhere, but we should be thankful to Turks and Turkish government for allowing foreigners the opportunity to live and work in Turkey in "PEACE" and without the fear of being abused and harassed-unlike many other countries in the world (I am not a Turk). Most Turks are very helpful and welcoming. How many times you heard of Turks burning houses and assaulting foreigners. Ok, enough said.

Best of luck and health to everyone. I cannot wait for my travel to Kusadasi this June. I'll do my best to visit Remember Me Restaurant.

Ramin

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I'm glad Ram benefited from some good advice and Ken, I really appreciate your comments. So unusual these days as many people seem to enjoy arguing on the internet. 

 

Of course everyone has had their own experiences, myself included, but I get fed up of hearing over generalisations about people from the East of Turkey. 

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