How to Start a B&B or Guest House

Whether it’s always been a lifelong dream of yours to open a bed and breakfast (B&B) or you’ve identified a great business opportunity, running a B&B can be incredibly rewarding and lucrative.

At the same time, the purchasing process can seem overwhelming. There are a number of factors to consider before opening your B&B doors to the public.

If you’re hoping to open a bed and breakfast and you don’t know where to start, you’ve landed in the right place. Here’s our guide to opening your very own B&B.

Is it right for you?

First and foremost, you must consider whether or not owning a bed and breakfast is right for you. This is something that takes a lot of hard work and commitment, so starting a B&B should not be a decision that you take lightly – your new business will require your time and attention day in, day out.

Consider the costs involved

Once you’ve committed to the idea of opening your B&B, it’s time to consider the costs involved. Whether you’re buying a B&B, transforming your own home into a B&B or purchasing an existing bed and breakfast business, the same running costs will apply.

From merchant services costs, food, personal expenses and linen costs, through to furnishings, business supplies, smoke detectors and fire alarms, there’s an awful lot to consider. Make sure you’re aware of all the costs involved and have calculated how much you will need to charge to cover these expenses and make a profit – is it achievable?

Familiarise yourself with the rules and regulations

Before opening a bed and breakfast, you’ll need to familiarise yourself with the rules and regulations associated with running a B&B business.

And, although you don’t need a qualification or licence to open a B&B, you will need to take into account fire regulations, consult with your local authority planning office before putting any concrete plans in place, gain planning permission for any alterations, obtain necessary alcohol and TV licences and make sure you register with the HMRC for tax purposes.

Know your market

Before you consider opening a B&B, it’s important that you understand the needs and expectations of your target market.

Depending on the location of your bed and breakfast, you’ll either be catering for business or leisure guests, or a combination of the two, and it’s important that there is a demand for your services in the area.

With this in mind, don’t fall into the trap of falling in love with a property, only for it to fail in the first few months due to there not being any customer demand.

How much money do you need to start a B&B or Guest House?

The amount of money you’ll need to start your new business venture will depend on a number of factors, including how much work needs done to the property, whether you already have an existing client base or not, and the level of service you are intending to offer.

All of these should be analysed in your business plan and marketing strategy before you even consider purchasing or converting a property.

Tourism is big business throughout the UK. But, if you’re thinking about starting a bed and breakfast, it’s crucial that you do your research to determine whether it’s the right decision for you.

If you’ve done your research and you’re ready to set up your own B&B, get in touch today to find out how we can help with your mortgage for a bed and breakfast business.

Stewart Hindley

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