79 Questions to Ask When Buying a Bar

Are you considering purchasing a bar for your new business venture? Acquiring a bar can be a great way to make money and have fun at the same time. But before you buy a bar, it’s important to know what you are getting into.

If you’re thinking of buying a bar, there are a few things you’ll want to know before taking the plunge. So, to give you an idea, here are some questions you can ask to make the process go more smoothly.

79 Questions you can ask when buying a bar establishment:

  1. What is the price of the bar? 
  2. Is the price negotiable?
  3. Is there a security deposit required?
  4. What is the quality of the bar? 
  5. What is the size of the bar? 
  6. What is the atmosphere of the bar? 
  7. What is the clientele of the bar? 
  8. What is the location of the bar? 
  9. Does the bar have a liquor license? 
  10. Does the bar serve food? 
  11. If so, what type of food does the bar serve? 
  12. Is there live music at the bar? 
  13. Is there a dance floor at the bar? 
  14. Are there TVs at the bar? 
  15. If so, how many TVs are there and what type of programming do they show? 
  16. Is there Wi-Fi available at the bar? 
  17. Does the bar have a pool table or other games?
  18. What kind of drinks does the bar serve?
  19. How old do you have to be to enter the bar?
  20. Is the bar wheelchair accessible?
  21. Do they have a specialty drink or cocktail menu? 
  22. Do they offer any non-alcoholic options? 
  23. Do they have outdoor seating? 
  24. Is there parking available? If so, is it free or paid? 
  25. Is there valet parking available?
  26. Is public transportation accessible? 
  27. Does the bar have a jukebox?
  28. Does the bar have a patio?
  29. Is there an age limit to enter the bar?
  30. Are there any additional fees that I should be aware of (i.e., cover charge, etc.)?
  31. Is the bar located in a high-foot-traffic area?
  32. What is the condition of the premises?
  33. Does the bar have a good reputation?
  34. How long has the current owner been running the bar?
  35. What is the average nightly sales volume?
  36. What is the breakdown of liquor sales?
  37. What is the price of liquor per drink?
  38. What are the operating hours of the bar?
  39. Does the bar offer any entertainment options?
  40. Is there a kitchen on the premises?
  41. If so, what is on the menu?
  42. Are there any restrictions on music or noise level?
  43. Is smoking allowed inside the bar?
  44. Is there insurance in place in case of accidents or damage to property?
  45. What security measures are in place to protect patrons and staff?
  46. How much are utilities typically each month?
  47. Are there any outstanding bills or debts that will need to be paid off by the new owner?
  48. What is the average age of patrons at the bar?
  49. Does the bar have a happy hour?
  50. How is the sanitation of the bar?
  51. How friendly and attentive are the bartenders and staff?
  52. Do they seem to know what they’re doing and be able to answer questions about drinks and menu items?
  53. How long are the wait times for drinks at peak times?
  54. Have you heard any good or bad reviews about the bar from friends or online?
  55. How many years has the bar been in business?
  56. What is the annual revenue of the bar?
  57. What are the terms of the sale?
  58. What is included in the sale?
  59. What is not included in the sale?
  60. Is the bar currently profitable?
  61. How much does the average customer spend at the bar?
  62. What are the demographics of the area around the bar?
  63. Is there any competition nearby?
  64. What is the condition of the building and equipment?
  65. Is there a loyal customer base?
  66. Does the bar have a good social media presence?
  67. Is there room for growth and expansion?
  68. Are there any outstanding lawsuits against the bar?
  69. Is the current owner willing to train the new owner?
  70. How many employees does the bar have?
  71. What are the employee wages?
  72. What are the employee schedules?
  73. Has a market analysis been done recently?
  74. How many bartenders are on staff?
  75. How many servers are on staff?
  76. How often do you change your menu?
  77. Do you have any specials or promotions running currently?
  78. Is the property zoned for commercial use?
  79. Are there any fixtures or equipment that need to be replaced?

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the 6 types of bars?

There are six types of bars, each with its unique atmosphere and offerings.

Pubs are typically casual and friendly places serving traditional British fare and a wide selection of beers.

Lounges are ideal for those who want to relax in a sophisticated setting with cocktails and wine served from behind a polished bar.

Cocktail bars focus on mixology, with inventive drinks and playful presentations. They are the perfect place to go if you want to try some innovative cocktails.

Wine bars are the perfect place to go if you want to taste some high-quality wines. Wine bars usually have knowledgeable staff that can help you choose the right wine for your palate.

Banquet bars are perfect for large groups, as they have ample seating and a wide variety of food options. 

Dispense bars are all about liquor, with a focus on high-quality spirits and mixers.

Is buying a bar a good investment?

In general, buying a bar can be a good investment if you know your way around the industry and understand the risks involved. For one thing, bars generally have low overhead costs and tend to be relatively recession-proof businesses. In addition, as social gathering places, bars can provide an opportunity for owners to connect with their community and create a sense of gathering place.

Of course, there are also some potential risks associated with owning a bar. Bars can be a risky venture due to the risk of excessive alcohol consumption and violence. And as with any small business, there is also the risk of failure.

What are the qualities of a good bar?

A good bar is characterized by a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere where people can socialize and enjoy themselves.
The bartenders must be knowledgeable about the drinks they serve and be able to make recommendations to their customers.

The drinks must be reasonably priced and the bar should offer a wide selection of drinks.

The music played in the bar should be enjoyable without being too loud.

The staff should be friendly and helpful.

The restrooms should be clean.

What is the best shape for a bar?

One of the most popular shapes for a bar is the rectangular shape. This shape is commonly used because it can easily accommodate a variety of different seating, such as tables and chairs. In addition, this shape provides a lot of space in the center of the bar for the bartenders to work.

Another popular shape for a bar is the curved shape. This type of bar often has a more intimate feel and can be more inviting to customers. In addition, curved bars can help create a focal point in the room.

Furtherly, the best shape for a bar depends on your specific needs and preferences. If you are looking for a versatile bar that can accommodate a variety of seating arrangements, then the rectangular shape is probably the best choice. If you are looking for a more intimate and inviting bar, then the curved shape may be a better choice.

What is the best color to paint a bar?

Many people may think that the best color for a bar is black. After all, this is the traditional color of bars and pubs. However, black can be quite overwhelming, especially in smaller spaces.

A better option for painting a bar is a lighter or softer shade of the color you want. This will bring more light into the establishment and make it look more inviting.

Moreover, if you want your bar to look modern yet stylish, paint the walls with the highest visibility in dark, sober tones like royal blue or purple, contrasting with the adjacent walls in white. This way, you will create a bold look that will surely impress your guests.


Bar owners should take pride in their establishments because running a bar is no easy task. It requires long hours, dedication, and immense knowledge of the liquor business as well as people skills to manage staff and customers 

By asking the right questions, you can set yourself up for success and avoid future headaches. With this list of questions, you will be well on your way to finding the perfect bar for you.

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