How much support do you get running your B&B

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10/07/2008
I do everything
24% (6 votes)
I do mostly everything
24% (6 votes)
I share running the inn equally
20% (5 votes)
I do most and hire out some
8% (2 votes)
Other
24% (6 votes)
Total votes: 25

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Silverspoon's picture
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10/16/2011

We have 2 suites and a cottage.  DH is the Mr. Fix-It man, lawn man, heavy lifting man.  He keeps the computers running and most importantly, he is the warm and fuzzy Mr. Greeter/Checker-In.  He makes the coffee and fruit for breakfast and carries the wet laundry to the line, hauls the groceries and brings all the linens from the room to be laundered when the room is turned.  

I do all the other things: Reservations, Inquiries, Marketing, Decorating, Cleaning, Cooking, Shopping, Laundry, Book keeping and Information for guests.

We are a good match as long as we are both well and present.  If one of us is down for a day, the other can generally fill in.  Any longer than a day and we are in trouble!  Rather than hire out anything, we just hunker down and do our best.  

 

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Joey Camb's picture
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DH does anything that requires OCD - ie

checking and rechecking we have enough laundry - me I would just double what I thought and not worry

Checking we have enough breakfast food for everyone and minimises wastage - which he is very good at

vac's all the stairs - we have 2 sets 4 flights its a majour operation

reminds me of all the daft appointments!

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05/30/2008

I was going to vote "everything", but then I changed it to "almost everything" in fairness to my dh.  ;-) 

But when push came to shove, his head was on the pillow at a decent hour every single night and I was working into the wee hours.  I should have hired more out, but he would always object.  We were not on the same page a lot of the time and that never works.  Sad

And, unfortunately he often did not want to do some things to B&B standards when he did help me out.  Don't know why he didn't get that!

 

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Joey Camb's picture
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We have a housekeeper who does 16 hours a week as if she does more than that we get absolutely slammed with tax and national insurance - my parents will sit in if we need a day off or for business related activities where we are both required - but I try and discourage my mum from trying to make up rooms as she is 75 now and its  too heavy for her really (I know i sound like a fussy daughter but she has had 3 strokes and my dad can't use one arm for 6 months due to a torn muscle and has really bad diabetes which affects his legs and he is out of breath doing one flight of stairs)

Also what helps though is not direct help is - all laundry is hired and is washed and delivered by a service - got a hole in? not my problem

My property management system - keeps us on a variety of booking sites and automatically updates our availability

DH is in charge of linen ordering (ie how much we want on every delivery) food ie makes all the lists and enjoys looking for 342 and so on and cleaning the kitchen (he is a bit ocd)

I deal with any kind of maintenance and forward planning ie what will be renovated, what we can afford and how long it will take and what we can fit in around busy times.

I also deal with 95% of phone calls 95% of people contact and 95% of marketing

 

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

My mother tried helping out a few years ago...got down on the floor to tuck in the blanket and I had to help her get back up. She did ok as a serving wench, but the room cleaning was too much. I told her to go to the beach and enjoy herself!

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Madeleine wrote:

My mother tried helping out a few years ago...got down on the floor to tuck in the blanket and I had to help her get back up. She did ok as a serving wench, but the room cleaning was too much. I told her to go to the beach and enjoy herself!

I would like to have family/friends here to do just ONE room to see what the workload is, let alone everything else.

I have a kid cleaning the windows outside with Windex, just a few windows, that she can reach. I showed her gently, and demonstated how it needs to be done.  I just saw her on the front door smearing the dust/dirt around on a dirty papertowel, and not even moving the basket I have hanging there with rack cards.  Should look great from the inside!

The funny thing is, little do these kids know, and I DO TELL THEM, they could be rich working for me, if they did what they are supposed to do, which is a decent job, of whatever it is. I asked the other one to sweep the little deck near the cottage, gave her the broom and dust pan, as the tree overhead dropped berries and twigs. She swept it all into the entry way of the gate, where guests enter, where we all enter. 

We shake our heads.

and NO it will not work, what you are thinking, I had a sister like that, crap up the job and then be sent away...was always her plan. Doesn't work here. 

Madeleine's picture
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Another family story (short version)- apparently I am some wicked mother. Had son helping with a big project in the yard. He was supposed to put away the tools and did not. I put them away and deducted my time from his pay. Flash forward 10 or so years and he has a window washing biz. He could not reach one of the windows (a decorative half moon) in the office building he was cleaning. He deducted that window from the cost and handed in the invoice. The owner asked why the diff and he told him he couldn't finish the job. THEN he told the story about me...

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06/24/2008

Good job Mom!  Lessons in life!

white pine's picture
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02/02/2010

yes

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white pine's picture
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I would love to know how many rooms correlated to how much help on this thread.  I know I do too much, but it will be trickier trying to figure out how much help I ought to have.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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05/26/2009

It's so difficult to compare properties/rooms/help needed. We have 4 rooms, but they're exceptionally large with big tubsand take a lot longer to turn over than another property with 4 rooms with big tubs, etc. In our busy time, and challenging surfaces. We (DH & I) run ourselves ragged with doing everything ourselves and keeping up with the acreage. Last year we were able to get some part-time help and it made a world of difference!

 

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Breakfast Diva wrote:

It's so difficult to compare properties/rooms/help needed. We have 4 rooms, but they're exceptionally large with big tubsand take a lot longer to turn over than another property with 4 rooms with big tubs, etc. In our busy time, and challenging surfaces. We (DH & I) run ourselves ragged with doing everything ourselves and keeping up with the acreage. Last year we were able to get some part-time help and it made a world of difference!

 

And it also depends on each persons energy level!!  We have 5 guest rooms, my turn over time frame has drastically changed in the 15 yrs working this business.  crying  But we still do it all on our own, if I was as busy as some on this forum, I would need at least 1 emp. to help out.

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

7 rooms here. Housekeeper in season. When we hire properly the housekeeper cleans all 7 rooms well. When we screw up we clean 3 rooms well and the housekeeper does 4 rooms crappy. Don't get me started. We are coming up on hiring season. I dread the arguments with DH over what constitutes 'good' help. Last year our first hire quit in the middle of our 'opening' weekend. DH & I cleaned 3 rooms and she was still making the bed in the first room.

He doesn't want anyone to quit in July so he just says, 'Well, if you don't like it go fix it. But don't antagonize the help.' (Yeah OK to antagonize the spouse, tho.)

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

I do everything except the dishes. DH can no longer vac the downstairs so that is added to my list now also. I may start using the high school kid a bit more - just not enough to get in trouble with the I R S. She needs the money.

I have 3 rooms (and bad knees)

Generic's picture
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No comment on the grounds that my other half reads the board....

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Skamokawa's picture
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08/24/2008

He built it.  I run it.

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06/24/2008

JB, I had to laugh!  I wonder if I asked my DH to answer this on my behalf what he would put!  I don't think it would be the same!  LOL

EDITED:  I changed my vote from 'I do most'  to 'other'.  I don't feel that it is equal but to be fair I don't do what I call MOST either!  He is the maintenance guy, grounds keeper, website mgr., breakfast prep & waiter, among other things.  I would be lost without this help and sometimes, like yesterday, I need him right then to handle a maintenance matter.  So while at times any of these can be time consuming, other times he has most of his day free to handle his other consulting work.  The valuable thing is that he IS here to handle these urgent matters that would cost us a fortune in labor costs without him.... 

 

Madeleine's picture
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copperhead wrote:

  The valuable thing is that he IS here to handle these urgent matters that would cost us a fortune in labor costs without him.... 

 

This cannot be overstated. If you can't do repairs yourself, make sure you have deep pockets. There was not a single tool anywhere when we did our tour thru this inn. And the EASY things we repaired when we got here showed how hard it is to maintain a 100 yo building if you have to hire everything out.

We found a list of 'things to have the handyman fix' when we went thru the desk.

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

But, some things are more equal than others. We split the tasks. DH does the heavy lifting, repairs, breakfast, bathroom cleaning, lawn, snow, maintenance and accounting. I do the rest. I sometimes think it is easier to do the manual labor than to do all the 'thinking' and 'planning'. 'Chores' have a defined start and stop. And 'thinking' all the time is tiring in a 'oh, poor you' kind of snarky fashion.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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05/26/2009

We do it very similar to you, but DH does all laundry, vacuuming, bed making and no guest interaction if he can. I do the cooking but we share the breakfast/dinner clean up. I'm the thinker and planner, meeter and greeter and I totally agree with you with never having a 'start' or 'stop'. Sometimes I wish I were stronger so I could be outdoors doing tasks without worrying about what's happening around me.

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