There is no doubt about it — the food truck business is booming. Aside from allowing entrepreneurs across the country to leave their traditional office jobs and time clocks behind, opening a new concession trailer provides owners with the satisfaction of being their own boss and earning a living doing something that they love. Before you open a new food truck business in your town, however, there are many important questions that you need to ask your local food truck association to ensure you are in compliance with municipal codes. Check out a few of these questions below, then be sure to shop for BBQ food trucks and other concession trailers with Southern Dimensions Group!
Four Questions to Ask Your Local Food Truck Association
What Do I Need to Start a New Concession Trailer?
Each local municipality has specific licensing and documentation requirements related to opening a food truck. Most commonly, these include:
- A valid Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) from the IRS
- A valid state tax identification number
- A certification from your city’s health department
- Documentation of a completed fire inspection
In addition to these documents, you will need a variety of licenses and permits. Your town may require that you have a roaming permit from the streets department, a county health permit, a city vendor license, and a peddler’s license.
How Do I Tax My Food?
Applicable tax rates on food vary from town to town, and sometimes, they even vary from location to location within the same town. To determine the appropriate tax rates for your food, check out your state’s Department of Revenue website. Most cities provide helpful information online that can point you in the right direction of finding the applicable tax rate for your area, as well as how to track and report your taxes. Many food truck operators track and report their taxes on a monthly or quarterly basis to avoid unpleasant surprises come tax time. Whichever you choose, be sure that you have a dependable system to track your sales, and that you have a backup if you track this information electronically.
Can I Operate My Food Truck Business All Year?
Although it is not all too common, you should check with your municipality to confirm that you can operate your new concession trailer business all throughout the year to ensure maximum profitability. If you live in a part of the country that sees harsh winters with ice and snow, your town may prohibit the operation of food trucks during the winter for safety reasons. Even if you are allowed to operate year-round, November through February is traditionally considered the slow season in the food truck industry, and you should have a game plan for how you will weather these less profitable times.
Are There Restrictions on Where I Can Park?
Mobile food trucks need a place to park in order to operate. Before you go all-in on opening your new concession trailer, it is wise to be aware of potential parking restrictions around town. For example, you most likely need a city permit or permission from the property owner to operate on private property, or you may not be able to sell food from your trailer if you are within so many feet of a brick-and-mortar restaurant. Additionally, your town may impose limitations on how many food trucks can operate in a given space at any given time. To ensure that you don’t risk receiving a ticket, be sure to ask your local food truck association what type of parking restrictions are applicable to food trucks in your town.
Find Your New Concession Trailer Online
At Southern Dimensions Group, we are here to help you pursue your true passion for cooking food and serving others. We offer an incredible selection of custom mobile food trailers that are sure to meet your every need, and we offer food truck financing for well-qualified applicants. We are happy to provide you with a quick quote on any of our concession trailers with a few pieces of information from you, and we would love to be your first choice in food truck trailer manufacturers. Discover the difference that expert craftsmanship and more than 10 years of experience make — order your custom food truck online now!