El Paso, Texas, is a unique city that intersects three states – Texas, New Mexico, and Chihuahua – and two countries– the US and Mexico! It has been marked, as an area where ozone levels have exceeded federal limits, since operating a gas station in El Paso requires the station to operate and maintain a Stage II vapor recovery system.
How to Start a Gas Station in El Paso:
Starting a gas station in El Paso, Texas, could be a great idea. If the establishment is under good management, it could be a very rewarding business.
It will be necessary to consider the type of gas station you want to open, a premium or a discounted brand. Consider if it will be a full-service station – where attendant checks oil levels, tire pressure, wipes the windshields and collects the payment – or a self-service – where the customers operate the pump themselves – or a mini- service station – where the attendant pumps oils and collections payments. Consider if you will have a convenience store too, car wash, sometimes toilet facilities, or if you will sell liquor and lottery tickets too. Decide if you will consider a franchise, or a coalition with a premium brand.
Select an appropriate legal structure and register a business name. Make sure you get all required licenses and permits such as:
o Air permits by rule
o LPG gas license
o Tax permits
o Weighing / measuring device permits
o Petroleum storage tank registration
o Vehicle inspection registrations
o Environmental regulations
o Industrial waste-water and storm water regulations
o Grease and grit trap waste disposal
o Petroleum-contaminated soil disposal
o Stage II vapor recovery requirements
o Tire storage regulations
o Used / scrap tires
o Private well or public water system
Estimate start-up costs as well as the initial operating costs, and have the necessary funds ready, possibly by applying for a loan. Have a cash flow projection drawn to help regulate the cash flow.
The location has to be appropriate where there is a demand for the service, and the gas station has to be visible, in a high-traffic area sometimes. A long-term lease will be recommended.
Carefully select the equipment, making sure it complies with the state rules such as Stage II vapor recovery system in the pumps. Estimate the number of staff needed and hire the appropriate candidates carefully. Monitor their services and ensure that the cash collected is secured by good high-tech systems. Typically, the cashier's cabinet is bulletproof. Decide on the types of services you will provide and the times of the service.
Advertise and market your station by placing ads in the newspaper. Offer something free if they visit and use your services such as a free car wash.
You could use the software and products available to help run a business better, thereby being able to manage it better, too. These are a few tips for starting a gas station in El Paso, Texas.