Many people dream of owning a bed and breakfast business. Many think that it’s easy money; after all, you’re just staying at home while having someone temporarily live on your property. But as always, there’s far more work underneath the relaxing exterior. Below are some quick discussions of what you really have to do when you own a B&B.
It’s Not Easy
Meeting people and touring them around places is fun. But administrative tasks can be boring. Because you are your own boss, nobody’s going to tell you off. It can be tempting to procrastinate and deal with the mundane tasks later, but failing to follow through means you’ll be risking your business to failure.
Even as you are starting, finding reputable real estate agents, getting the necessary business licenses, and setting up your website can prove challenging. That’s why many rentals fail before actually starting. The simple fact is, even preparing for a B&B is challenging. That’s why it’s important to take everything step by step. Rushing to the end might make the process more difficult.
You Have to Get to Know Your “Neighbors”
Know your competition to find out how to match them or even do better. You can do this by going on online listings like Trip Advisor. Look up other B&Bs within your area and see how you can establish your unique selling point. Apart from having your own website, make sure your business is on other booking websites and apps so you can gather more guests.
You Need to Be Flexible
You will meet difficult people and still have to wear a smile despite feeling tired. Remember that running a B&;B is running a service business. You will have to smile and be cordial no matter what you feel. There will be moments where you’ll have to deal with irate customers or difficult clients.
Adapting to different people and knowing how to be flexible based on the situation will help you run a service business, especially something like a B&;B. You’ll soon realize that almost everyone is nice- as long as you know how to get on their good side.
You Won’t Have as Much Free Time
People will book at awkward times. Guests will arrive very late in the night, and a trip away from your business can mean getting email inquiries and having to turn them down. A bed and breakfast or any form of rental lodging means you’re on the clock 24/7. And if you’re managing multiple properties, this can mean having next to no free time during peak seasons.
Investing in a reliable time management or logging system is an invaluable addition to your business. Having a way to seamlessly track which units will be rented and up until when will help you in better managing your time. Yes, managing a B&;B is a busty job, but that doesn’t mean you should completely let it take over your time.
You Can’t Accept Everyone
Managing any form of rental lodging is hard work- especially if it’s a short-term stay like a B&;B. You’ll have to clean the linens and other bed sheets, put everything back into place, and ensure that everything is clean before the next client comes. The simple truth is you can’t accept everyone if it means more work for you- especially if the schedules are too tightly packed.
Instead, go with higher rates and fewer guests instead of affordable rates and a landslide of guests. Especially if it’s just you and your partner managing the business, making sure that the labor on your end is manageable is critical to your business’s longevity. In exchange for the higher rates, you can offer better and high-quality services. This way, your hard work won’t burn you out, as you’re putting your effort into batches instead of continuously working hard.
Don’t Try to Skimp by Acquiring Services from Family and Friends
It’s harder to make requests or demands for revisions and corrections from them. And the worst thing is they might not even treat it as professional work. They’ll take their time, feel bad if you reject the work, or not even do quality work. To avoid this entirely, hire someone full-time. You can expect them to do a better and more consistent job than simply making requests from your family. Get it right the first time and hire a serviceperson so that you won’t end up wasting time and money.
These points are not meant to scare you from a great opportunity; owning a bed and breakfast can be quite rewarding. What you have to know is that this isn’t a job you take sitting down.