The Thieves Guild
A Collection of D&D 5e Resources
Managing, owning and running businesses in D&D 5e
D&D Core Info

Businesses

Offical Rules - Business Profits

Downtime Business Profits

The DMG greatly simplifies running a business. During a player's downtime, they can choose to spend some time running a business that they own. According the the DMG p129, "a character rolls percentile dice and adds the number of days spent on [his/her] downtime activity (maximum 30), then compares the total to the Running a Business table" (see below). The DMG ignores inventory costs, repairs, and other such expenses, as income is believed to offset those costs. The cost of staff is the only real cost that the DMG uses for maintenance (although DMs are free to add other costs, such as taxes from a ruthless ruler). Whether is player has to pay those maintenance costs is dependent on their roll.

d100 + Days Result
01-20 Result:  You must pay one and a half times the business's maintenance cost for each of the days
21-30 Result:  You must pay the business's full maintenance cost for each of the days
31-40 Result:  You must pay half the business's maintenance cost for each of the days.
41-60 Result:  The business covers its own maintenance cost for each of the days
61-80 Result:  The business covers its own maintenance cost for each of the days, plus a profit of 1d6 x 5gp
81-90 Result:  The business covers its own maintenance cost for each of the days, plus a profit of 2d8 x 5gp
91+ Result:  The business covers its own maintenance cost for each of the days, plus a profit of 3d10 x 5gp

Optional Rules - Business Profits

Alternative Business Profits

Since D&D is about adventuring, getting "free gold" from a business does not always work well in a game system where players look for treasure and loot. It is also added work for the DM to manage and track. However, some DM's may wish to add a little more realism ... while a party is adventuring, it is possible for a business to thrive and become a lucrative enterprise. Alternatively, a business can be raided by bandits, fall prey to arson, be infested by rats, or just have very little customers. Every business cycle (up to the DM : month, week, quarter, year), the DM can roll on the following table.

In order to use the table below, the DM must know the maintenance costs (which is typically the staff salaries) and the value of the business (this is usually the price paid for the business — see Stronghold structures for some example businesses). The DM can choose to roll for a straight profit/loss (usually 5gp-150gp), or they can base the profit/loss by the business value (last column).

Note: Profit/loss based on the business value uses a percentage of the value of a business ... which means that a large, luxurious tavern that cost 50,000gp will potentially earn much more than a seedy tavern in a bad neighborhood that cost 6,000gp. This may lead to very high profits, but also very large loses (DMs should be cautious).

d100 Occurance Change in Value Profit/Loss Profit/Loss by value
01 Occurance:  The business burned to the ground, leaving nothing but ashes Change in Value:  -100% Profit/Loss:  Business lost. Profit/Loss by value:  Business lost.
02 Occurance:  The business was sieze by the local ruler, claiming criminal activity Change in Value:  -100% Profit/Loss:  Business lost. You may be able to speak to the ruler, or pay a high fine (50% of value). Profit/Loss by value:  Business lost. You may be able to speak to the ruler, or pay a high fine (50% of value).
03 Occurance:  A fire has destroyed part of the business, and must be repaired Change in Value:  -10% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. cost x 2 Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 10% of value + 5d10x5gp
04-05 Occurance:  The market crashes, inventory is hard to find and customers are scarce Change in Value:  -5% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. cost x 1.5 Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 5% of value + 5d10x5gp
06-10 Occurance:  Bandits & thieves rob the business, leaving little behind. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. cost x 1.5 Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 2% of value + 3d10x5gp
11-15 Occurance:  The business was infested with vermin, ruining inventory and scaring off customers. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. cost x 1.5 Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
16-17 Occurance:  A noble or local leader has a vendetta against you and is making business difficult. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. cost x 1.5 Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
18-19 Occurance:  The local ruler added sharp fees and taxes this last business cycle. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. cost x 1.5 Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
20-21 Occurance:  Supply shortages have increased wholesale prices, increasing costs. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
22-23 Occurance:  A storm caused damage to the structure and had to be repaired Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
24-25 Occurance:  A local crime lord sent thugs to your business to collect protection money. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
26-27 Occurance:  An employee robbed the store and never returned. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
28-30 Occurance:  Bloody cultist symbols were painted on the structure, scaring customers Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
31-32 Occurance:  The local ruler temporarily mistakingly closed the business for a few days. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: ½ maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.2% of value + 1d6x5gp
33-34 Occurance:  You lost a key vendor and had to find supplies elsewhere, this slowed business. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: ½ maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.2% of value + 1d6x5gp
35-36 Occurance:  The neighborhood has took a turn for the worse, leading to poorer clientele. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: ½ maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.2% of value + 1d6x5gp
37-38 Occurance:  Crime has risen in the neighborhood, leading to fewer customer. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: ½ maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.1% of value + 1d6x5gp
39-40 Occurance:  A competitor has been spreading wicked rumors about the business. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Loss: ½ maint. costs Profit/Loss by value:  Loss: 0.1% of value + 1d6x5gp
41-60 Occurance:  The business breaks even this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Profit/Loss by value: 
61-62 Occurance:  Word is spreading about the business, and business is up this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.1% of value + 1d6x5gp
63-64 Occurance:  A higher class of citizens have moved into the area, increasing business. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.1% of value + 1d6x5gp
65-66 Occurance:  Crime has decreased in the area, and patrols have increased, increading business. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.2% of value + 1d6x5gp
67-68 Occurance:  A local trade guild has made your business a preferred associate this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.2% of value + 1d6x5gp
69-70 Occurance:  You managed to buy supplies at a discount this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.2% of value + 1d6x5gp
71-72 Occurance:  Your employees were energetic and hard working this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.2% of value + 1d6x5gp
73-74 Occurance:  Your business was written up in a local paper, increasing business. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
75-76 Occurance:  Town criers have been raving about the high quality of your business. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
77-78 Occurance:  A local noble visited your business and made a large purchase this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
79-80 Occurance:  A local festival brought in plenty of customers this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 1d6x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 0.5% of value + 1d8x5gp
81-82 Occurance:  The neighborhood appears to have grown, and so have profits this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 2d8x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
83-84 Occurance:  The market is soaring in the region and business is good. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 2d8x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
85-86 Occurance:  A wealthy patron stopped in a spent quite a great deal of coin this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 2d8x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
87-91 Occurance:  High demand for your products/services lead to high profits this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 2d8x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 1% of value + 2d10x5gp
92-94 Occurance:  Your product/service is talked about in far off kingdoms this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 2d8x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 2% of value + 3d10x5gp
95-96 Occurance:  A high noble and his retinue nearly bought out your entire inventory this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 3d10x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 2% of value + 5d10x5gp
97 Occurance:  The business is blessed with good fortune this period. Change in Value:  0% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 3d10x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 2% of value + 5d10x5gp
99 Occurance:  Your business was mentioned at court, and business soars this period. Change in Value:  +5% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 4d12x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 5% of value + 5d10x5gp
00 Occurance:  The holy ones divine that your business is blessed by the god(s). Change in Value:  +10% Profit/Loss:  Gain: 3d20x5gp Profit/Loss by value:  Gain: 10% of value + 5d10x5gp

Note: A creative DM and take any of the "loss" situations and use them as an adventure hook. For example: "Bloody cultist symbols were painted on the structure, scaring customers" could make the party seek out these cultists. Or, "A fire has destroyed part of the business, and must be repaired" could lead the party to some evidence of arson, and the party will need to find the culprits.

Modifiers to d100

Condition Modifier
Have an Experienced Manager or Clerk (12gp/month) Modifier:  +1 (max +1)
While Adventuring, Actively Promoted the Business to Others (i.e. "Persuaded" traders to visit the business) Modifier:  +1 (max +5)
While Adventuring, Poorly Promoted the Business (i.e. own a tavern but lost a drinking contest) Modifier:  -1 (max -5)
Last Period Expenses and Events
Gold spent on Marketing & Promotions (last period) Modifier:  +1 / 5gp spent (max +10)
Gold spent on Repairs & Improvements (last period) Modifier:  +1 / 10gp spent (max +5)
There was a Festival, Carnival or Tournament (last period) Modifier:  +1 (max +1)


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