Question from MacDaddyArdican
How do you return the thieves guild to its former glory?
What I said
After finishing the main story line with Nocturnal and returning the skeleton key, you must keep accepting siode missions from Delvin Mallory and Vex. The easiest way to do this quickly is to accept the Fishing job from Delvin and the Burglary job from Vex, and keep repeating these job types. (Make a save before attempting to pickpocket/break into a house, so if it goes wrong you don't have to waste time, money and stolen goods paying a bounty).
After completing enough of these side missions, Delvin will have special jobs for you with specific objectives. Complete these jobs to gain more influence in the town of the specific job, e.g the one for Solitude involves planting contraband on a corsair ship. Contrary to the first answer, you do not unlock new sanctuaries in these towns, just the ability to bribe guards. After completing a few of these you activate a new quest where you just attend a ceremony in Riften to be formerly given your new role as guildmaster, and your special armour. Be warned, completing enough side missions to unlcok the special missions took me forever, so even if you think doing them is having no effect just keep persevering until you get the special jobs.
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To return the thieve's guild to its former glory, you have to do the side quests vex and the other guy give you. After you do enough of them the guild gets enough money to set up bases in other towns. After you do all the side quests the guild will have a sanctuary in every town and a lot more members.
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