How to find the best restaurant equipment deals

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Whether you're starting out in the food service business or you need to update restaurant equipment in an existing establishment, there are several options and ideas to consider during the search and purchase process.

Consider used restaurant equipment

Some of the best deals in the industry revolve around used restaurant equipment. This plan makes sense on several levels: you save money over buying new because it's a buyer's market; you can sometimes negotiate the price down from what's listed; and if you buy from a reputable supplier, you're getting clean, inspected equipment that is going to work hard and last a long time.

They key factor in buying used restaurant equipment resides in these two words: "reputable supplier." You need to find a respected company, like, that has a lot of experience in dealing with restaurant equipment. This way you're bypassing the fly-by-nights, and folks who don't really know the ins and outs of food service equipment.

Look beyond local

After you familiarize yourself with food equipment standards, it's time to shop. Looking beyond local restaurant equipment suppliers is another smart idea. Yes, there's a lot to be said for supporting businesses in your area or region. But with a business to set up and run, and a profit to be made, you owe it to yourself to look a little farther and deeper and see if you can find the best deals. Plus, shipping costs may not be as much as you think, and they should outweigh the savings you enjoy by buying used restaurant equipment over new.

Consider it all

No piece of restaurant equipment is too big or small to ship to your location, so don't limit your thinking about what you can find deals on. Cooking equipment of all kinds, refrigeration units, freezers, dishwashers, ice machines, sinks, restaurant furniture, deep fryers, catering equipment, coffee and cappuccino makers, you name it: Top suppliers will carry it all.

In sum, don't be shortsighted when looking to supply your restaurant, catering business or other food service. Look for used restaurant equipment to save money. Shop around. And don't limit yourself to local suppliers. Your bottom line will thank you.