6 Rules for Deciding What to Keep When Taking Over an Old Establishment

When you take over a business, there are many aspects and things to consider. One of those considerations that you need to make is if you are going to overhaul everything or if you want to keep certain things.

If you are an entrepreneur who has successfully taken over an old establishment, you will undoubtedly run into the same problem every entrepreneur encounters sooner or later: what should you keep and what should you throw out?

6 Rules for Deciding What to Keep When Taking Over an Old Establishment

Here are some rules to help you decide what is worth keeping when taking over an establishment.

Does It Fit Your Needs

When it comes to a new business takeover, and you need to consider what items to keep, you should consider your needs. If you are taking over a restaurant, but are rebranding to have a completely different theme, then old decorations may not be needed any longer. If you are transforming an old space like a restaurant to function more as a bar or cafe, certain appliances or equipment may be expendable as well.

This also is something to consider not just with physical items, but potentially with staff and business practices as well. Taking over a new business, you need to consider who fits your new establishment, if they can be retrained or if you need to make changes and part ways. An overhaul of how the business functions might need to also be considered. You first need to factor in your needs in order to decide what is worth keeping.

Functional Improvement

When you are taking over a new establishment or business, you need to think about functionality. You need to consider changing everything, from the toilet roll holder to the stove in the kitchen, and not just from a visual or aesthetic perspective. Businesses change how they operate, and you need to ensure that everything meets industry standards, if they would benefit your operations and the clients and customers that you have. Unless you run a business built on nostalgia, you should always seek to modernize and update old businesses to make them appealing.

Do The Designs Align

Getting away from the functional aspect, another reason to keep certain items from an old business might simply be an aesthetic or design choice. If your business is rebranding or redesigning itself, you may immediately want to replace everything. However, you can choose to keep certain items if they fit your design choices moving forward anyway. This would save you the trouble and effort of having to change absolutely everything in your newly acquired establishment.


Deciding what to keep for an old establishment can be tricky, but one simple idea is basically to consider if it is cost-effective to do so. You want to obviously replace anything that is no longer functioning or looks old and dirty, but if something is in good condition and doesn’t need to be replaced, you can absolutely keep it. This is especially important for items that are not directly involved with customer interactions or that would be behind the scenes like computers, or office items where you can make due for the time being.

Can It Be Repurposed

Keeping old items is often a case of whether or not they are useful but some items that you may consider getting rid of or replacing might be worth keeping, but not for their original intentions. Repurposing old items from an established business, especially one that is unique, can create unique interior design and decor options, or bring customers and clients in as attractors. Y

You can also break down certain items and use the materials to create unique pieces that keep the spirit of the old business you have taken over and are choosing to transform.

Connection With Community And Customers

If you are taking over a business or company that is local to a community and has established itself with a strong customer base, it is worth considering keeping certain items. A sign, unique decoration, or image may be worth keeping in order to appease people that have a personal or emotional connection with the business you are taking over. This can retain their business, making you more profitable.

Additionally, that connection might even be personal to you, and you might choose to keep a piece of the previous business if you have ties with it, perhaps taking over a family restaurant or a place that you were a customer at a long time ago.

Ultimately, you need to consider the idea of benefit to your business as the deciding factor of whether or not you should keep something when you are taking over a company or establishment. There are many external factors, but depending on your vision, your profits, and your long-term and short-term goals for success, you will have to decide if something is worth retaining.

Dragan Sutevski

Posted by Dragan Sutevski

Dragan Sutevski is a founder and CEO of Sutevski Consulting, creating business excellence through innovative thinking. Get more from Dragan on Twitter. Contact Dragan