Anyone who wants to open and run a bar or restaurant in the Houston area will need a liquor license if that business plans to sell alcohol. Operating and selling liquor without a license can result in some heavy fines and even jail time. Applying for one of these licenses is a lengthy process that takes longer than most expect. You need to supply quite a bit of information about yourself too. Working with a Houston liquor consultant can make this process a little easier and is especially helpful in some specific situations.
For the First Time
You will need a liquor license before opening any business that sells any type of alcohol. This includes bars that sell mixed and specialty drinks as well as hard alcohol and restaurants that offer a limited menu of alcoholic drinks. You absolutely cannot sell alcohol without having a liquor license, even if you just want to do a soft open ahead of time before opening your business. A consultant with experience in the industry can help you file all the paperwork and meet all the steps necessary to obtain a license.
Not everyone starts out with a brand new restaurant concept and idea. If you want to get started in the food and beverage industry, you might decide to buy an existing business and use the resources and supplies that come with that business. Even if you purchase a bar that already has a liquor license, you will need to petition the board to have that license changed over to your name. Liquor laws require that the person on the liquor license be the owner of the business, though you may have the option of putting that license in the name of your restaurant manager.
Moving to a New Location
Landlords have the right to increase rental rates every year because of market conditions. If your rent climbs too high, you might consider moving your bar or restaurant to an entirely new location. Before planning out your move, talk to a liquor law consultant Houston specialist about whether you need to update your license. Some counties may prohibit the types of drinks that you can sell, the prices that you sell those drinks for or even the times that you operate. Working with a law consultant helps you know when to apply for a license and when to update or change your license.