How to Open a Gas Station? Steps to Own a Gas Station

owning a gas station

There are many steps to start a gas station. First, you need to apply for a gas station license from the municipality in which you want to open your gas station. In order to get the license, you need to have a site plan and a detailed diagram of your gas station construction layout.


After you acquire a site plan and diagram, you need to submit the application electronically. You will be given a time frame for approval or denial. If you have not heard anything in the time frame, you can contact your municipal authority for approval.

Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur or an established business owner, opening a gas station could be your next business. What are you looking for? In this article, we will discuss in details how to open a gas station in the US.  We will also discuss why are some gas station for sale in Florida, Oregon, and Ohio.

Do you want to start a gas station business and you have no experience? Don’t worry, we have the best guide to starting a gas station business with little funds and no experience. By the end of this article, you will learn to analyze and draft a sample gas station marketing plan with some good marketing ideas for running this venture.

Things to know before you start a gas station franchise

In order to have a clear in-depth analysis of this business venture, we’d need to know the following important factors;

  1. Industry Overview (Economic, legal, and market status of the idea)
  2. Market research and feasibility report
  3. Gas station business plan for beginners
  4. Owning a gas station and gas station name ideas
  5. Licenses and Permits for opening a gas station
  6. Gas station marketing plan and how to execute it
  7. Cost of starting a Gas Station
  8. Marketing ideas & Strategies for successful business in this field

Once you know these things you are ready to dive into the oil and gas industry. Let’s discuss these points in details.

Industry overview

The Gas Station industry over the years has experienced negligible volatility when compared with businesses in the oil and gas industry. In recent years, as more Americans have acquired automobiles, the total vehicle miles increased and this led to increased demand for gasoline and other fuels. Hence the revenue continued to increase, some automobile proprietors would prefer to go for premium fuel, which is rated higher than lower-octane fuel.

Read: Top Business Ideas with Low Investment and High ROI

Just like other heavy industries, the Gas Station industry has also experienced some ups and downs over the last few years but it is still a great business. As a result of the strong domestic economy, the performance of gas stations has also improved greatly.

The Gas Station industry is indeed a very large industry and pretty much thriving in all parts of the world. Statistics has it that in the United States of America alone, there are about 168,000 licensed Gas Station businesses responsible for employing about 220,226 employees and the industry rakes in a whopping sum of $556 billion annually.

gasoline business

In the bid to stay afloat in the highly competing gas station industry, owners of gas stations now go the extra mile to ensure that they make their facility is welcoming and helpful for customers. Gas stations now have vulcanizing services, car wash, luxury stores, coffee bars, snack bars, and cigar lounges within their facility so as to leverage on the opportunities around them to generate more income.

Estimated costs to buy a gas station franchise

These are the key expenses you are expected to make when starting a medium scale but standard gas station company business in the United States of America. You can buy a gas station for sale in Ohio as the cost will be pretty much the same.

Read this too: How to become a millionaire by this year?

  • The total fee for registering the business in the US – $800 Approx
  • Legal expenses for obtaining licenses and permits (Health department license and business license) and permits (Fire department permit, Air and water pollution control permit, and Sign permit et al) as well as accounting services (CRM software, Payroll software, P.O.S machines, and other software) – $15,300 Approx
  • Marketing promotion expenses for the grand opening of the gas station in the amount of $3,500 and as well as flyer printing (2,000 flyers at $0.04 per copy) for the total amount of $3,580 Approx
  • The cost for hiring a business consultant (including writing a business plan) – $2,500 Approx
  • The cost for insurance (general liability, theft, workers’ compensation, and property casualty) coverage at a total premium – $30,400 Approx
  • The cost for leasing a standard facility in a good and centralized location along a major road or expressway – $250,000 Approx
  • The cost for remodeling the gas station facility and construction of underground gasoline tanks/reservoirs – $400,000 Approx
  • Other start-up expenses including stationery ($500), phone and utility (gas, sewer, water, and electric) deposits ($6,500) Approx
  • The operational cost for the first 3 months (salaries of employees, payments of bills et al) – $60,000 Approx
  • The cost for start-up inventory (supply of nonautomotive fuel, automotive fuels (e.g. diesel fuel and gasoline), cooking gas, and automotive-related goods) and for fuel dispensing machines and equipment (automobile repair tools, vulcanizing tools, and wheel alignment tools) – $550,000 Approx
  • The cost for the purchase of gasoline tanker – $45,00 Approx
  • The cost of store equipment (cash register, security, ventilation, signage) – $13,750 Approx
  • The cost for the purchase of furniture and gadgets (Telephone, printing machines, computers, tables and chairs et al) – $14,000 Approx
  • The cost of building and hosting a website – $600 Approx
  • The cost for the opening party – $8,000 Approx
  • Miscellaneous: $10,000 Approx

You will need an estimate of two million, five hundred thousand dollars ($2.5 million) to successfully set up a medium scale but standard gas station company in the United States of America. With this amount, you can buy a gas station for sale in Florida. Please note that this amount includes the salaries of all the staff for the first 3 months of operation and business with more than one outlet in key locations within the same city.

Starting your Gas Station business from scratch vs buying a gas station franchise

If you are thinking of starting a gas station business or owning a gas station, it will cost you a good amount to purchase the franchise of a successful gas station. This is because people usually look for well-known brand names when buying gasoline products. But it is significant to keep in mind that the franchise of gas station does not come cheap, this is why aspiring entrepreneurs choose to start their own gas stations from scratch.

gas station for sale

Here are some of the basic insurance covers that you should consider purchasing if you want to start your own gas station business in the United States of America;

  • General insurance
  • Health insurance
  • Liability insurance
  • Fire Insurance
  • Risk Insurance
  • Workers compensation
  • Overhead expense disability insurance
  • Business owner’s policy group insurance
  • Payment protection insurance

Gas stations have always been an integral part of the United States’ economy and culture. In fact, the country has one of the busiest gas stations in the world with convenience stores. The question is how do you begin owning one? First, you need to register with the government and be licensed to sell gas.

This is different for each state so check with your local sub-regions. Next, you will need a location to open up your station. Usually gas stations are located on major highways or roads. They can also be located near popular restaurants or stops if you want to offer a convenience store service to those looking for food or bathrooms.

If you have any questions let us know in the comments!

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