Construction - close or discount?

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TheBeachHouse

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Good morning. My second day on this forum.
We are buying an existing Inn and plan construction very soon after we close. We need to put in a new front porch (before the rotton one falls down!)
Would you close the inn for construction? Or do you offer a discount? Or maybe a coupon for a free visit in the future? Or just a big ole' sign saying, "forgive the mess!"
 

EmptyNest

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Has the inn been closed prior to its sale or does it continue in operation? If closed, I personally would stay closed until you have it up to snuff for guests or they will 'ding you' on TA for issues. IF there is another entrance, might not be an issue, but why open when you are not really ready?
 

TheBeachHouse

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Has the inn been closed prior to its sale or does it continue in operation? If closed, I personally would stay closed until you have it up to snuff for guests or they will 'ding you' on TA for issues. IF there is another entrance, might not be an issue, but why open when you are not really ready?.
It's open now and she's taking reservations for Fall. We need to get our calendar straight and whether to close will be one variable - the others being when she has reservations, when the contractors can get to us and probably a few we haven't thought of yet.
 

Generic

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Depends on how it will affect guests. Make sure you sign a contract that includes days to completion and a penalty clause, citing that you will have to re-accommodate guests. Give leeway, but not too much. It is better to pay an excellent contractor and have it done legally, on time and well than to have to worry about it after.
 

JBloggs

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Repairs go on when needed but we all purposely try to do this in the off season, but stuff happens. Is it the main entrance, and will it be affecting the guest stay? Will there be a ton of noise? If that is an issue, then you can offer them a decent discount for the inconvenience, you may end up with lifelong guests that way.
 

Arks

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Hard to know what to do without walking the property myself, but I've stayed at places before that had construction going on and really didn't find it to be a problem. But the construction area was blocked off and only a little noise in the daytime, none at night. If your project means people have to walk through the construction area, and/or if the work noise will be a problem, that's not good, of course.
Maybe inform people in advance and let them decide if they still want to come, or cancel. Certainly don't want people to arrive uninformed. People don't like surprises.
 

Flower

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Has the inn been closed prior to its sale or does it continue in operation? If closed, I personally would stay closed until you have it up to snuff for guests or they will 'ding you' on TA for issues. IF there is another entrance, might not be an issue, but why open when you are not really ready?.
It's open now and she's taking reservations for Fall. We need to get our calendar straight and whether to close will be one variable - the others being when she has reservations, when the contractors can get to us and probably a few we haven't thought of yet.
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I would close up shop till all your ducks are in order. TA report I could not care less about. But what I care about is I want My B&B to have the wow factor . So when My guest see it from the out side to the inside their are so happy they have booked here. That first impression is so very important. It set the stage for the rest of their stay.
 

Madeleine

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Not sure if you are buying in an area you know and live in already. Keep in mind finding contractors, hiring contractors and getting them to show up IN SEASON is very difficult. Everyone and their brother is doing construction/renovation when it's nice out.
What I'm saying is you may have wonderful plans and find out they won't be put into motion until it gets quiet anyway.
But, what to do about guests...contractors can't show up until after 9 AM, you have to get breakfast out of the way. If guests are impacted by the construction - they can't use the porch and it's what faces the water, they'll have to keep their shades drawn or have strangers looking in the window at them, that sort of thing then you should compensate the guests somehow.
Not everyone does this. You can certainly read horror stories on review sites about construction going on and guests not being able to use the features they actually selected that hotel for.
 

OnTheShore

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We plan major projects on the cottages for vacant periods (off-season or blocked dates), but will carry out work on other, non-guest, facilities (buildings, boats, grounds...) as needed, but within reasonable hours and arranged so as to minimize any adverse impacts on guests.
We recently completed a major, major construction project (photo album here) that has resulted in our cordoning off large areas of our lawns (and restricting access to one of our cottages) to promote the grass growing back. We sent out a newsletter to subscribers, as well as all guests with reservations who were not subscribers, to let them know the situation.
As is usually the case with large projects like ours, there are a lot of factors that are beyond your control, and the whole thing ends up taking twice as long as planned. Our project did extend into our early season and we did end up having to shuffle some guests around (upgrading them at no additional charge).
 

gillumhouse

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WHEN I actually get to get my new roof, IF I know enough in advance WHEN they will get to me, I will close the online reservations. IF I still have long-term, the construction will most likely be while they are at work - otherwise, I will most likely give them 50% off the weekly rate or comp it - depending on circumstances. Since the roof is over all rooms..... 2 chimneys are coming down also. Still short for it as I want to still have a "comfort zone" in the bank when we finish.
 

Joey Camb

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We've done a combination of the 2 and got away with it pretty much unscathed
New roof - had guests in but not on the top floor (we are 3 floors)
Restructured the top landing - did it off peak but had guests in throughout
New bathrooms - had guests in the entire time, but the plumbers worked with us.
Decorating - operated as normal
Front garden block paved - shut for the first day carried on operating the rest of the time
New windows - shut as there was mess and disaster everywhere, but took the opportunity to do other messy work and reorganisation at the same time as the builders finished each room.
Will be replacing all the hall carpets on two staircases will shut each section off as we do it so will continue to operate
 

Samster

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Depends on how the guests enter the B&B. We live in a historic home and pretty much have to work on our double front porch every year. It's a major undertaking every time with scraping and painting. So, when we had the biz, we would plan the work for the slow season and block off reservations. I hired it out...if my dh were to do along with his full-time plus job, it would have taken months! hahaha....
 

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