Selling A KY Possible B&B

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We have a historic home in Springfield KY for sale and it could make a wonderful B&B. The main house (built in 1871 and remodeled and added to in 2008) is close to 7000sf. Has 6 bedrooms in the main house. It also has a guest/pool house of 1100 sf with kitchen, full bath, great room and large loft area. It opens onto an in-ground diving pool. Has surrounding 6.8 acres.

We are looking to get back to family in Phoenix AZ area - would also consider a trade possibility in that area. 

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I just received this back from the Washington Co. KY PVA office:

I saw where your house was for sale.  We will be sad to see you go, but also understand.

I think your place would be a lovely B&B!  Our county does not have any zoning so anyone would be free to do what they wanted with the property.  Once they started the business they would then need to get a business license and probably contact the health dept for food inspections, but that would be on the new owners and not you.  There is nothing you would need to do at this point to market it as a potential B&B.

Take care,

With it being sold turnkey someone could go into the B&B business basically immediately.

In this area there are not a lot of large B&B homes, but the area gets a lot of tourists as on the Bourbon & Winery tour, Civil War Trail, Abe Lincoln areas, etc. There also are not a lot of hotel/motels in the area either.

Could also suit someone that wanted to live in a beautiful place and occasionally make it available - or simply make the guesthouse available.

EmptyNest's picture
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Sounds good for you. Lucky you have such lenient laws. There was a chef here recently looking for a property but don't know if she found anything or not. 

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Hi! Thanks for thinking of me. 

After looking at a few B&B's (and they're sad financials), I've decided to invest in real estate instead. This will create a passive stream of income for me on top of working as a chef (or maybe I have a future in real estate). I may revisit the idea on the future, possibly when I retire. 

Thank you for all the wisdom you've all given me!

Chef DRG

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see this is what baffles me if I was selling I wouldn't be sellling on "oh you could do better than this blah blah" I would be working like a fiend to show this is doable with cold hard proof! place up for sale near me is burning it - taking half what I would be taking with the same property and frankly neighbours of my friends were thinking of buying it and he was curt and borderline rude to the CASH buyer! and I know they are desperate to get out! mystifies me!

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Exactly right. I never expected to get rich as an innkeeper/owner but I'm not going to invest $2m for a $30k/yr paycheck while working around the clock with no life. Maybe I would feel differently if I had a partner who shared the workload and/or had an outside career, but this just isn't the right thing for me at the moment. 

ChefDRG

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Springfield KY is a unique small town within easy reach of 3 major cities and 2 major airports plus close to a small private airport. Education is major around here with quite a few small colleges and the county invests heavily in the local schools. It's government is extremely 'user' friendly. And the whole town seems to help each other out. The week of July 9, 2017 is the 'Jets Over KY' and the town tries to help find lodging for all the people that arrive here. They did the same when a recent movie was filmed in Springfield.

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I just received this back from the Washington Co. KY PVA office:

I saw where your house was for sale.  We will be sad to see you go, but also understand.

I think your place would be a lovely B&B!  Our county does not have any zoning so anyone would be free to do what they wanted with the property.  Once they started the business they would then need to get a business license and probably contact the health dept for food inspections, but that would be on the new owners and not you.  There is nothing you would need to do at this point to market it as a potential B&B.

Take care,

With it being sold turnkey someone could go into the B&B business basically immediately.

In this area there are not a lot of large B&B homes, but the area gets a lot of tourists as on the Bourbon & Winery tour, Civil War Trail, Abe Lincoln areas, etc. There also are not a lot of hotel/motels in the area either.

Could also suit someone that wanted to live in a beautiful place and occasionally make it available - or simply make the guesthouse available.

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My opinion, for what it's worth:
I'm just not optimistic. There are so many properties, up and running B&B's, with years of goodwill and good reviews, in great tourism locations, that have been for sale for years, and STILL can't find a buyer.

And location is almost EVERYTHING in the lodging business. It's a special sort of people who stay at B&B's, so it can take a town with a big population to generate enough of those special B&B people to keep the place busy. 

I wish you the best of luck, and a buyer with the financing in place might appear tomorrow. But don't count on it. Keep looking for other options to sell. It's just hard, terribly hard, to sell most big properties like this, especially when you're in a small town.

__________________

All saints can do miracles, but few of them can keep hotel. ~ Mark Twain

 

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Here is a website where the realtor currently has it listed that shows some pictures:

http://www.oldhouses.com/26613?searchlist=26389%2C22880%2C26572%2C26724%...

Zillow/Trulia have wrong estimates as they do not include guest/pool house, etc. nor reflect turnkey option.

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Looks gorgeous! Kind of a bummer the listing agent thinks it would make a good Airbnb. But that's a whole other story.

__________________

Most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one's mistakes. - Oscar Wilde

 

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I'll check on the okay for B&B. Town is small enough that everyone knows everyone just about. It is a very family oriented town with great schools. My husband is 84 (which is why we need to move back to Phoenix where kids and grandkids are) and I'm 76.

Would also make a beautiful setting for weddings - and plenty of room to set up outdoor tent(s) - seating.

Which Inn sites would be best to try? We really appreciate your help and suggestions.

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There could be three different areas that the owners could have: For pure luxury the downstairs master bedroom suite.

Or the upstairs new master bedroom suite which is separated from the other 3 bedrooms.

Or third, the guest/pool house is completely self sufficient. 

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Chitwood wrote:

There could be three different areas that the owners could have: For pure luxury the downstairs master bedroom suite.

Or the upstairs new master bedroom suite which is separated from the other 3 bedrooms.

Or third, the guest/pool house is completely self sufficient. 

If possible get clearance for the new owners to operate a b&b. It will make the sale go more quickly. Owners will need an entire apartment to themselves, not just a single room, no matter how gorgeous. Many newbies don't get this and burn out in a year because they have no privacy. Think about living in this house but you're only allowed to use your bedroom for everything - meals, family gatherings, sleep, TV watching, etc.

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I'm checking on Springfield's B&B requirements - you are right, good idea to have definitive information on that rather than just hearsay Smiling

The guest house would be perfect for an owner/caretaker. Also the upstairs master would work well as the large room could be used as a family room, has a large attached bedroom, a full bath, an upstairs laundry room (no washer/dryer at present), a nook reading area, tons of storage space, including a large walk-in closet, plus another closet with all the wiring so could be command central.

There are two staircases - front hall and one leading directly down to the overly large kitchen.

There is a large laundry/pantry area off of the kitchen.

Porches and a terrace area around the house. Basement is large and has shelving. There are two walk-in closets in the dining room. We have eight dining room chairs and table could probably seat 10 if needed.

 

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Springfield KY is situated in one of the major Kentucky tourist areas, including the Bourbon, winery tours, Civil War sites, horse farms and the place where Abe Lincoln's parents were married. Some of the homes of Abe's uncles are still standing. Louisville, Frankfort and Lexington are each about an hour's drive. Bardstown is about 20 minutes away. Springfield itself is a small, welcoming town - easy to get around. It has the Lincoln museum downtown and the Lincoln Heritage Park on the outskirts of town. There are several excellent golf courses - one at the Lincoln Heritage Park area and the other in Lebanon - just south of Springfield.

The manor is about 4 miles south of downtown Springfield on Highway 55 - and about the same distance north of downtown Lebanon.

The manor would be sold turnkey (although the guest house does not have a refrigerator). There are several other B&Bs in Springfield - one being Maple Hill Manor. We currently have it listed but listing due to run out - realtor, who grew up in Springfield, was the one who suggested it would make a great B&B so I presume no zoning problems.

West wing was added on in about 2008, as well as the kitchen being completely updated. Downstairs master suite is absolutely stunning and includes a large steam shower along with a jetted tub, along with his & her walk-in closets. Also downstairs is a parlor, den/library, large dining room, sun room, powder room and laundry room. There is space in the laundry room for another ref/freezer.

The kitchen has two ovens, 4 burner with griddle gas range, microwave, warming drawer, two islands, large ref/freezer, two dishwasher drawers, separate veggie sink, stand alone ice maker (we've never used it), space for a bar/wine refrigerator and eating area - and a gas fireplace. Granite counters, original wood floors, 

Upstairs in the original part of the house there are 3 bedrooms - one has it's own bath while the other two share a bath. There is a small room off of one of those bedrooms that could be converted into a bathroom. 

The added on upstairs wing consists of a suite with a large bedroom (original owners used it as a family room) and another bedroom attached with a full bath. Would be perfect for a family.

All rooms are large with high ceilings. There are 6 fireplaces. Lots of built-in wiring that we have no idea what it is for - surround sound and security I believe for some of it.

The guest/pool house has a kitchen area with oven/range, dishwasher, microwave, area for a ref/freezer and a bar area with room for a bar/wine refrigerator. It also has a full bath and large upstairs loft area that could be used as a bedroom or game room. It has french doors opening onto a porch/pool area. Also attached to a three car garage. There are also several parking areas. The guest/pool house is on it's own electric meter.

The home sits on 6.8 acres and has a small pond. Bordering the land are meadows, distant tree line, ponds, which provide homes for deer, flocks of turkeys, etc. We also have a lot of varieties of birds year round.

We have it listed at $799,500. Replacement cost according to insurance is about 1.3 million. Our utilities have averaged about $250/month. It has gas heating (main house) and electric cooling. Guest/pool house is all electric.

I have a lot of pictures if someone is interested.

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NEVER ASSUME ANYTHING...that is the first rule in the B & B Business surprise Does is have an area that could be PRIVATE OWNERS quarters...VERY IMPORTANT THESE DAYS for an innkeeper. Looks like the guest house would be a good option for that. 

For what you have said, the price sounds fair. If I were  you, I might go a step further and do some investigating on your own to see if zoning would allow for a B & B. And, get it in writing! That way you could offer a guarantee of no problem for a future owner.

I also suggest once this is done that you list on some Inns For Sale Directories...as a "inn conversion" because that is where many people go who are interested, not a local realtor.

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See in the UK id be going for what we call planning permission - this is solid cast iron that you can do X with something, id be doing planning for guest conversion on the 3 car garage - could you put on another story? planning for cottages in the grounds or chalets and so on - would give new owners lots of scope for expansion if they wanted it and add value to the property

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The guest house loft area sits over the top of the garage. I know the owner of the field/woods next to us would consider selling if someone wanted to add onto the property. There is an area where another guest house could be added if needed.

Originally the place had considerable acreage and pieces were sold off over the years. It was considered one of the most beautiful homes/farm in the area according to an old document - and that was before it was upgraded! The addition of the west wing was done so well that you can't tell where the old ends and the new begins.

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You have a lovely property there and would also make a wonderful wedding venue as well. The more options you can peg down for sure will show possible owners you have done homework for them. Please don't even say AIR BN in the same sentences !! This place looks made for the real thing... legal

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The nearby Maple Hills Manor does have wedding venues so I can't think that would be a problem here and enough grassy areas for beautiful wedding setups plus a pure luxury 'wedding suite'.

Springfield KY is apparently really easy about people doing what they want with their own land - the reason being as they are heavily agricultural, extremely independent and not into big government.  When we moved here we here told that we would be eligible for the Homestead tax exemption. So the next day we went to the required office. When we walked in the door the lady looked up, smiled, asked if we were enjoying our new home and that she had almost completed the paperwork for the exemption and would run it out to our place for signatures as soon as she had it done. Up until this point we hadn't done anything more then smile and say hello. Our daughter from Vegas was with us and absolutely stunned that without even having met us they had started taking care of what we would need. The whole town is that way. I don't think they ever met a stranger. We get a lot of bicycle riders on 'tour' and they are greeted like long lost family. Springfield has a lot going for it.

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Dang server..another duplicate

EmptyNest's picture
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Duplicate

EmptyNest's picture
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But the question I want to know first. Is it zoned for Bed & Breakfast use? Or will a potential buyer have to jump through a million hoops to get approval? Does each bedroom have a bathroom?  That would be a major selling point, if not...new owners will have to renovate to make it so and that means more $$$. A pool is not always a good thing for many people especially when it will increase insurance costs.

It looks stunning....thanks for sharing. But from my standpoint, most people today are looking for a turnkey property with a proven revenue stream.

What is it that would draw visitors to your area that would make this a good B &B?

Are there other B & B's nearby? 

How much acreage?

What would you be listing it for?

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