Establishing any business and excelling in it is not something that happens overnight. Starting a B&B or small hotel is no exception, especially if you are new to the hospitality industry.
With countless factors to consider before opening the property to the public and even more to contend with once you run your business day-to-day, it can easily become overwhelming.
But there’s no need to give up on your dream.
Is Owning A Bed And Breakfast Right For You?
Firstly, you might want to consider if it’s something you want to commit to. It’s a huge undertaking that will require your devoted attention day in and day out. Many people may find the concept outweighs the practice.
So you can look before you leap, you should be able to answer these questions (among others) affirmatively:
- Are you good at dealing with pressure?
- Do you love people and enjoy being around them daily?
- Do you enjoy mundane tasks, such as cooking and cleaning?
- Are you an expert on your destination?
- Do you like the idea of being self-employed?
- Do you have a solid support base around you?
- Can you learn from your mistakes?
- Are you a multitasker?
- Do you enjoy routine?
- Are you willing to try new strategies and technologies to achieve success?
It’s essential you know what to expect from the job. This is not simply so you know if you’re a good fit, but so that you can do the job well and give yourself the best chance at success. It’s a challenging endeavor to undertake alone or with a partner.
Another consideration is why you are opening a bed and breakfast. Are you embarking on this journey because the lifestyle appeals to you and you love customer service, or because you see it simply as an opportunity to make money?
Loving what you do is generally the recipe needed for favorable results. What you define as success is up to you. Maybe as long as you receive solid reviews and keep your head above water, you’re happy, or perhaps you want to be an award-winning property. Find here more about inns for sale in Virginia.
Opening A Bed And Breakfast
There are several circumstances under which you might open a bed and breakfast. Perhaps you’re buying land to build one, turning your Home into one, or purchasing an existing property.
When starting from scratch and opening a new business, you must first consider the costs you might face. Depending on what country you’re starting your business, costs will vary. For more info visit visit ideaflight.com. They include but are not limited to:
- Personal expenses – The most necessary expense when you become self-employed is insurance. Whether it is health, disability, life, or insurance for the business or loans, it is vital to protect you and your family in case you can no longer work.
Talk to other self-employed people, your financial advisor, and an insurance broker for recommendations. At the other end of the spectrum, small items like gifts, grooming, clothing, hobbies, and entertainment tend to be overlooked. So make sure you build these costs into your budget immediately.
- Merchant services – Accepting credit cards is necessary for severe bed and breakfast owners. Figuring out the actual rate can be difficult when there are so many different types of cards – commercial, reward, international – each with additional fees. A simple solution is to use an integrated payments solution when setting up the technology you’ll use to help manage the property.
- Wasted food – While there are many ideas for using up food that hasn’t been served, coming up with ways to decrease the amount of food that comes back on guests’ plates is always a challenge. Ask people when they reserve if there is anything they can’t or don’t eat and keep track of that information for menu planning. Pay attention to foods that consistently come back on the plate, and if the serving sizes are too big or there’s a garnish, people don’t eat, etc.
- Damaged linens – Unlike the wear-and-tear of a typical home environment, and since your linens must be in pristine condition, replacing your linens regularly is a priority. There is a reason that large establishments use white linens – they are so much easier to replace one piece at a time. Everything white requires minimal sorting, and it is easier to spot stains and marks that must be treated before the piece hits the laundry.
- Website – Websites need constant monitoring, updating, and upgrading if you want them to continue to deliver bookings. You also need to make sure it’s secure. All of this costs money each time you need a change made. However, you save a lot of time, pain, and money by using a website builder provided by a hotel industry tech company.
- Room furnishings – The first step to achieving your bed and breakfast opening is ensuring that all electrical outlets, plumbing, and landscaping are up to code and aesthetically pleasing. Then you’ll need to fill out the spaces with furniture and ensure all your painting is up to scratch. Plus, you’ll want to put an excellent welcome sign out the front of your property.
- Smoke detectors and fire alarms are required by law and could save your life or the life of your guests.
- Business supplies – The days of running a business from pen and paper are fast disappearing, so you’ll likely need to purchase a computer, printer, and perhaps other devices like tablets so you can still manage your business while on the go.
- Kitchen equipment – You’ll need enough cutlery, plates, glasses, etc., for all your guests, plus some in reserve in case of damage. Cooking and cleaning equipment is also essential.
- Zoning for a B&B is established at the local government level and varies with almost every authority. It can include the number of rooms you can use for guests, if the owners must live on the property, parking arrangements, traffic and noise concerns, etc. If you don’t cover this off, it could cost you a lot of money in fines for running an illegal business.
And this is all before you account for advertising and marketing costs, or if you need to hire staff!
Research, training, the proper support, and a little hard work will set you on the right path to running a successful, rewarding business and enjoying a lavish lifestyle.