Starting a B&B is seriously hard work. It can be extremely liberating too, breaking free from your day job to pursue your dream. But, if you’re going to be successful, you need to be prepared. Here are 6 things you need to do before starting a B&B business if you want to be successful.
1. Prepare yourself for what it’s really like running a B&B.
Guests aren’t always grateful, cheery and full of joy during their adventures. Cooking a fried breakfast for 10 people or more is physically demanding, and you can expect to spend around half of your day turning the rooms around and preparing meals.
You should expect your social life to suffer too. However, if this isn’t putting you off, the more successful B&B owners can expect to make around £100k a year. Of course, many more make less than that.
2. Decide whether you’ll be starting a B&B business from scratch or whether you’ll be buying into something that’s already up and running.
Buying an established B&B is by far the easiest option and should start generating revenue faster than a new business particularly for new to trade operators. If you want to start from scratch you will have to show you have the capital to cover mortgage repayments for at least the first 12 months of trading as well as money to convert the property into a B&B.
3. Research the area.
What’s the appeal to visitors to come and stay with you? It could be a nearby business that provides a steady flow of contract staff needing a bed for weeknights, or spectacular coastal views and walks. Maybe there are museums and castles that draw visitors from miles around. Whatever it is, it should help you determine the service you’ll offer.
Will you price by the week or offer a separate rate for weekends? Who you are targeting and why they want to be in the area should drive the clientele that you are looking to appeal to.
If you are targeting families looking for a staycation then maybe a games room would add appeal, or if you have the space and the resources, a swimming pool. You can read more on adding appeal in our article ‘5 ways to help your B & B guests enjoy rainy day holidays’.
If you are targeting local business people, then perhaps a more executive feel with free Wifi in the rooms and shoe polish or ironing boards available may be more important.
4. Consider how you’ll segregate your own living space from the space you’ll offer to guests.
Ideally you should set aside a living room for yourself that guests won’t have access to so you can unwind in the evenings. Having your own space will be essential to making your new business work for you, your family and your guests.
5. Secure finance from a specific hospitality finance provider such as Stewart Hindley.
A specific hospitality finance provider will have a better understanding of your needs and will also have a network of underwriters that fund B&Bs, hotels and restaurants.
At Stewart Hindley, we specialise in B&B finance and can provide support and advice to help you find the right products on the market to fit your individual needs as they stand, and also as they evolve with the growth of your business.
In order to secure finance for your B&B or hotel, you’ll need to be able to present your business plans and marketing plans and financial projections. At Stewart Hindley, we’ll help you pull all these supporting documents together to get you over the starting blocks and secure the finance you need to get your new business off the ground.