I was supposed to be doing inspections during this contingency period and negotiating the terms of the lease with the landlord, an ancient guy named Saul who, when he bothers to call me back at all, usually confuses me with someone else from one of his other buildings. Nearly every conversation with him starts with about five minutes of me refreshing his memory about who I am.
But for the last week or so, he hasn't returned my calls at all, and my repeated calls to his office staff have gotten me nowhere. It's frustrating, because we're basically in agreement on the terms, so this shouldn't take long, but I need to come to an understanding with him before we can move forward.
The other thing I'm waiting on is insurance. We met with our family's insurance agent months ago, went over every fine detail and all the coverages available, and he gave us a ballpark quote of about $5,000 per year, which included the "package", workman's compensation, and an "umbrella" policy of $1 million. I'm putting those words in quotes not because I'm using them in a novel way, but because I'm simply repeating words that these insurance people have been using and I have no idea whether they're real terms or not. I also don't care. I hate insurance.
Part of my prep for getting the restaurant open involves using a pickup truck for a couple months, so I can go to restaurant equipment sales and auctions, whip out cash, and haul stuff away on the spot. That is how you get deals....right place, right time, cash in hand. Anyway, after calling the conventional car rental places and getting quotes of $1200/month and up (plus milage) to use a truck, I placed an ad on Craigslist looking for someone to rent me one, and found a guy willing to do it for $400/month.
Sweet. Except the guy (understandably) wants me to carry insurance on the truck. So I've been going back and forth with the insurance folks about whether this can be done. Yesterday, our family person told me it's not possible--that one has to have the title in order to insure a vehicle. Today, she calls me back and says that it is possible, under some sort of "leased equipment damages" clause or something. But then she also lays the quote on me, and it's $9,000/year.
Later, she called me back with another, more reasonable quote, but says that they won't do the leased equipment damages thing.
So, back to the truck guy, to tell him what's up and he agrees to talk to his insurance people and get back to me.
And so I wait. And continue to wait. Antsy to get started gutting the place and buying equipment and painting and re-tiling and all that other fun stuff that needs to get done before I can actually toss a burger on the grill or dunk a basket of fries into the hot oil.
Fun, eh? The restaurant life is so very glamorous.
Oh, the other thing is that we're technically supposed to close tonight, but the contingencies have not been taken care of. In other words, we don't have a lease, and we don't have inspections completed. I have an inspection scheduled for tomorrow at one, my hot appliance guy is supposed to come look at the six-burner unit and the char-grill, but the seller is not returning my calls or emails to inform me of whether he'll agree to extend the contingency period or have someone there tomorrow at one to let me and the appliance guy into the space.
This is just the tip of the iceberg of this whole four-month process, which has included multiple sellers (who disappeared when it was time to sign the contract), a seller who wanted to change the name of the owner at the last minute (ah...no), multiple "other offers", which seemed to appear any time there was a sticking point to the negotiation and just as mysteriously disappear when we appeared ready to walk, a gas company guy who wouldn't turn on the service because he deemed the mechanical room unsafe, and more.
I'll detail that stuff another time, when I'm in the mood to backtrack. This post was just about venting my frustration with having to wait. I feel like there's so much I need to do to push this project forward, but I can't do any of it until the current steps are completed; lease, insurance, truck, inspections, close.