If you find the idea of being your own boss, setting your own schedule, and seeing clients in your own private space tempting, then check out our salon suite complete guide. Salon suite business is one of the fastest-growing trends in the hair and beauty industry. A suite rental can give beauty professionals the freedom to see their clientele one-on-one in a location that they control, at a much lower cost than running your own salon. Who wouldn’t want that? Free from the noise and drama of a busy booth, you’ll create your own space with your own tools, rules, and decor. Many professionals use salon rental suites as a stepping stone towards growing their brand.
What You Will Learn?
This article explains some of the basics of renting your own salon suite. We break down the essential steps you’ll need to take, things to watch out for, and give you home handy tips and resources to get started.
Jump to The Section You Like
- What Is A Salon Suite?
- What Are Salon Suite Rental Prices?
- What Are The Running Costs Of A Salon Suite?
- What Is Included In A Salon Suite?
- How To Find Salon Suites for Rent?
- Requirements For Renting A Salon Suite
- Salon Suite Lease Term Agreements
- Pros & Cons Of Renting A Salon Suite
- How Do You Run a Successful Salon Suite?
What Is A Salon Suite?
Running a salon suite business is essentially like owning a mini salon within a salon. You get your own private space, complete with four walls, behind a door that you can close. Many professionals choose a salon suites for lease because it gives them the freedom to work alone. They pay rent to someone else but are their own boss. This means that you’re free from staff meetings, sales requirements, and can set your own schedule. Some stylists might even opt to see clients after-hours if the salon is close to another building with staff that work late. If you just rent salon space, you need to do what the owner wants. If you rent a salon suite, you alone get to choose how you’ll operate.
What Are Salon Suite Rental Prices?
Just like any commercial space, the costs of renting a salon suite vary depending on the size and location. One salon owner might charge weekly rent, while some owners will charge by the month. You could be looking at paying a higher price for a weekly salon suite in downtown New York, while a monthly rental in a smaller city might be a lot less.
The key is to do your research. Look up salons in a few different locations and ask yourself where you’d prefer to work. Are you eager to be in a busy downtown area, or do you want something in a cozy neighbourhood? Do you want to stay close to your existing clientele, or focus on creating some new salon business opportunities? Average costs depend on salon suite location and typically amount to about $250-$500 per week. If owning your own business, growing your brand, and being free to keep your own profits appeals to you, renting a salon suite can be a great strategy.
What Are The Running Costs Of A Salon Suite?
Running a salon suite comes with its own costs, along with all of the benefits. When you decide that you’re ready to take this step, you’ll need to consider both the running costs and the start-up costs for your salon suite business.
To begin, you’ll need to consider your salon suite start-up costs. These are part of the initial investment that you’ll make, apart from salon monthly expenses.
Salon suite costs will include things like:
- Your Security Deposit
- First and Last Month’s Rent
- Any Licencing Fees
- Salom Bookkeeping and Appointment Software - A system to stay organized from day one is essential.
- Insurance - You’ll probably need your own renters and liability insurance.
- Phone and WiFi Setup- Some salons include this in the lease.
- Any Additional Furniture/ Decor Items
- New Tools - What extra tools will you need to buy?
- Product Inventory - Your retail inventory, plus anything that you will use.
Start creating a list of your regular, monthly expenses. These are more general expenses for running your salon suite. Make sure to budget for them, each month.
You’ll want to consider:
- Monthly Rent
- Laundry Expenses
- Phone Bill
- Any Credit Card Fees
- Taxes - Make sure that you know this ahead of time. Then, you can put money aside.
- Supplies - This includes retail supplies and anything that you use on clients.
- Accounting Fees
If this seems intimidating, don’t worry. There are a lot of websites and online forums out there. Many other beauty professionals have been down this road. You’ll find a whole community of resources and professional support to help you be a success.
That said, make sure that you have an idea of the expenses you’re facing, and a plan to tackle the monthly costs. Average start-up costs can range from $1,500 to $3,000. Take a close look at your existing client list and make sure that you can create enough long-term profits to balance this out. A useful strategy is checking an online form or free bookkeeping website to get some basic cost and profit calculations. Good planning skills and organization are the keys to long-term success.
What Is Included In A Salon Suite?
A salon suite should essentially be its own miniature salon-within-a-salon. It’s a private space with all of the benefits of running your own business. Remember, you should have access to everything that you and your clients will need. When you’re visiting a salon suite for rent, make sure to have a checklist ready. Come up with a list of “Essentials” that every salon suite should have, “Extras” that you would prefer, and any “Common Area” requirements you can think of that will help you be a success.
Salon Suite Basics Include:
- Gas, Electric, and Water Utilities
- High-speed Wi-Fi
- Cabinets & Storage- You don’t want your space looking crowded.
- Salon Sink / Hand Sink
- Electrical Sockets - Make sure that you have enough on each wall
- Retail Shelving - How many products will you promote? Where can you display them?
Salon Suite Extras Could Be:
- Nail and Pedicure Stations
- Insulated Walls for Sound Reduction
- Audio Connection to the Reception Area
- Custom Signage
Salon Suite Common Areas:
- Concierge During Regular Business Hours
- Reception Area/ Bathrooms With Daily Cleaning- This is a must..
- Complimentary Water/ Coffee
- Kiosk Directory
- Security System - Will you have after-hours access?
- ATM - If there isn’t one here, ask where the closest one is.
- Maintenance - Who handles this? How can you reach them?
- Laundry - Do they have onsite laundry?
How To Find Salon Suites for Rent?
Once you’ve decided to start your own salon suite business, finding the right salon location is your first step. Start by checking out Google and searching for things like “salon suite for rent near me” or 'private salon suites for rent'. Reach out to your network of professional stylists and friends in the industry. They may know of something that’s just about to go on the market. Some beauty professionals begin by checking the Facebook pages of salons in the areas where they want to work- this is a great way to get a “feel” for different locations and see if they look like a good fit.
After you’re done making your shortlist, you’re ready to send some emails and book a tour to the location. Here’s a quick to-do list to make sure that you’re as informed as possible:
- Make sure to Google any reviews or feedback from customers and stylists. Check to see if people have posted anything on forums about each business on your shortlist. You’ll want to get an idea of what the salon’s clientele think of the business, the services they offer, the location, and the staff.
- Check out the Instagram and social media pages for each salon business. Do they have a big online presence? What about their social media and marketing strategy? Checking the recent posts and photos will also give you an idea of the salon suite location and the staff. It’s also a good way to get a feel for the overall aesthetic of the salon and the clients you’re likely to meet.
- Take the time to search on YouTube. This can be surprisingly helpful when you’re getting ready for each next step. There are some great videos and posts out there by people who have gone through the process, themselves. Remember: you’re part of a wider creative salon suite business community that can help you through this, from start to finish.
- Check their websites. This step is important. After all, if you rent a salon suite, your salon business will become associated with theirs. This will give you a better idea of the services that they offer, each stylist you’re likely to meet, and the overall professionalism and marketing strategy of their business.
Requirements For Renting A Salon Suite
One thing that you need to consider when starting out in your own salon suite is each service that you will offer. As the owner of your own professional salon business, you’ll be your own boss. That said, many salon suites will require the renter to have formal qualifications and licenses relating to cosmetology or massage, etc. You should also consider what professional services the salon suite itself offers and see if there’s an opportunity for you to grow your brand and introduce something new. This could be the perfect chance to expand your client base.
Some of the specialities which are permitted are:
- Haircutting and treatments
- Hair Braiding / Weaving
- Eyelash Extensions
- Nail Care
- Skin Care
- Massage Therapy
- Permanent Cosmetics
Salon Suite Lease Term Agreements
You’re ready to sign your new lease. Congratulations! Now, make sure that you sit down with your new landlord and hammer out the details. You’ll need to both be clear on how long you will commit to renting the space, what they expect, and get everything in writing.
Next, you should agree on a termination period for your lease. Do you have the option to terminate the agreement early, if need be? How much notice do you have to give? Is there a minimum period that you need to stay for (for example 6 months, 8 months, etc.)? Once again, get this in writing.
Finally, how often will you pay rent: monthly, weekly, or biweekly? Is it possible to get a discount if you can stay for multiple years?
This is your best chance to ask all your questions and avoid any unpleasant surprises later on. You and your landlord can both have an honest conversation about your expectations, needs, and any benefits. You’ll also want to work out who is responsible for things like utilities, wifi, and any cleaning fees.
Consult a lawyer before signing any lease agreement. You can feel pressured into signing an agreement on the spot but taking time out and getting proper legal advice is there for the bad days...which hopefully will never happen.
Here are some important questions to ask:
- How long is the lease term for?
- How much is the security deposit?
- What changes am I allowed to make to the salon suite?
- Are you running any move-in specials?
- Am I allowed to sublease my unit?
- What happens if I need to break my lease?
- Do you provide business marketing classes/ continued education?
- Are there any other fees in addition to my weekly rent (annual maintenance fee, cleaning fee, etc.)?
Pros & Cons Of Renting A Salon Suite
Pros of Renting A Salon Suite
- The best of both worlds. You offer your clients each service alone in a private space, but have the convenience of working at a salon.
- A buyer’s market. An increasing number of businesses are offering salon suite rentals, so you can get started quickly.
- Less hassle. Utilities will often be included in your lease, so you don’t have to worry about the cost and bother of setting them up.
- Possible to split costs. Depending on your salon, they might even let you share your salon suite rental with one or two colleagues.
- Being where the action’s at. When you rent a salon suite, you own your own business, but you still operate within a creative community of other professionals, swapping ideas.
Cons of Renting A Salon Suite
- Missing out on walk-by traffic. It’s hard for potential customers to see you and “pop in”.
- GMB Problems. Google My Business is a great marketing tool, but it’s hard to list here because Google doesn’t like listing businesses inside each other.
- You need to be cost-savvy. Make sure you do your own calculations and don’t feel pressured into being sold-to when you rent. Check that no costs are being overinflated.
- The salon’s preferences. Depending on your agreement, you might have to put up with the salon’s choice of music, or not be able to paint/ change your salon suite much.
- Running a business takes work. You’ll still need to put in the effort to market each service you offer, reach out to clients, and track your own finances.
How Do You Run a Successful Salon Suite?
Marketing and running your new salon business can be exciting. Don’t worry- you won’t have to reinvent the wheel. Here are some tried and true tips to get you started.
First, make sure to set up your social media, using some appealing photos of your work and your new space. You can also promote by answering questions on forums like Reddit and Quora. Keep up your contacts by reaching out to clients on Facebook.
Next, add yourself to online marketplaces. This is a great way to attract new business.
Third, make sure to deliver a great experience, each time. This will help clients remember you and maximize your odds of getting referrals. Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals.
Finally, make sure to use salon software. Some salon suite renters want you to use whatever software the salon uses. If you have a choice, salon software like Zolmi can help you stay organized and keep on top of your new business.
Top Salon Suites Providers
Phenix Salon Suites
They offer a “Boutique Salon Suite Concept,” providing a range of options across searchable salon suite locations. This includes everything from month-to-month leases and a salon suite with equipment provided, to luxurious spa-like rooms with the option to create custom decor.https://phenixsalonsuites.com/our-story/
Sola Salon Suites
They boast fully-equipped locations all across the United States, plus educational events and occasional special offers and promotions. With more than 600 locations nationwide, they provide a lot of options.https://www.solasalonstudios.com/who-we-are
Salons by JC
Operating since 1997, Salons by JC connects you with a salon suite for lease in over 100 locations. They have options in both the United States and Canada. They also offer continued support through workshops and training.https://salonsbyjc.com/about-salons-by-jc/
My Salon Suite
This website includes a searchable map, with salon suite locations all across the United States (plus a few in Canada). Many of their available salon suite locations are concentrated in the southern states.https://www.mysalonsuite.com/about-us/
They have over 30 salon suite locations of offer across the U.S.A. and are set to expand. They offer a fully equipped salon suite and networking opportunities across the United States and Canada.https://salonplaza.com/about/
Salon Lofts offers spaces at 166 different salon suite facilities. Their suites are constructed together in secure buildings with open-concept ceilings and they offer limited liability insurance, on-site laundry, and several other amenities.https://salonlofts.com/learn_our_story
They offer independent studio spaces in three different states, across twelve locations. They’re a fast-growing company with a focus on education, providing free classes at their Los Angeles location.https://www.modernsalon.com/374799/to-the-republic-an-interview-with-salon-republic-founder-eric-taylor
Salon Boutique operates in Texas, Arizona, Tennessee, and Nevada, focusing on the “luxury-spa” style salon suite business. These salon suite facilities come fully appointed with the option to customize them. You can schedule a tour through their easy-to-use website.http://www.salonboutique.net/about/
Optima Salon Suites
With prices starting at $249 a week, they have a range of options to choose from. Their salon suite business operates across California and Oregan and has a variety of different suites equipped for various services.https://optimasalons.com/about-us/
Renting a salon suite is often the next step in creating your own business and brand. If you want to be successful, make sure that you do your homework ahead of time. Go in armed with a clear budget, a set of expectations, and a marketing plan.
Good planning will make everything easier. Remember to always consult a lawyer before signing your lease agreement. Make sure that you have your client base ready to go, and have a solid plan to expand it. And don’t forget to check out Google and YouTube for advice- a lot of other professionals have experience with salon suites. Above all else, enjoy being part of a growing and vibrant professional community.
And if you love these ideas or have some other ideas that you've used in the past to promote your salon business, why not share them with the Zolmi community in the comment section below. We would also be delighted to answer your questions, as well.
The five stages of small business growth
Independence or Convenience? A Stylist's Decision
Environmental impacts of the rental business model compared to the conventional business model