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aquarijen

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Hi All!
I've been reading this forum for hours now and you all haven't scared me off yet...
I have an intense desire to work hard, be criticised, have my things broken and feelings hurt on a daily basis while I miss meals. :)
I also want to live in a beautiful place in the mountains and raise sheep, chickens, grow an extensive garden, make canned goods and cook everyday from scratch, etc - and leave corporate America. I already cook everything from scratch - I figure that's the easy part. ;)
My long-time boyfriend (of 11 years) is of the same mindset - as is the helpful (and mostly non-sullen) teenager. The boyfriend would retain his job as a registered nurse and leave me to manage the Bed and Breakfast.
I'm looking into building my own, as I haven't yet found what I am after - and the location I'm after - except as land. But what I found was either encouraging or just plain nuts. There would seem to be very few hotel, motel or other options right *at the mouth* of the "Tail of the Dragon", here on the Tennessee side. This is a popular road to travel on motorcycle and is adjacent to Smokey Mountain National Park. The lots of land I was looking at are adjacent to the park as well. There are other businesses sprinkled around. The land is convenient to town as well.
How did you all determine that your location would support a B&B? Would you think that folks (in general) would be attracted to a "farm" style B&B - that cooked from scratch with eggs from the henhouse, veggis from the garden, milk from the cow, etc.
Has anyone quit their job to do this?
I could commute for a while - should I buy the property first and open for weekends or something like that before leaving my fulltime job?
I also know it is probably a tougher time to think about opening a hospitality based business, but it's a catch-22 - the land is less expensive right now, too...
How did you get started?
Oh so many questions! And this is all just to start... I started my business plan and am a good bit of the way through it - at least the soft bits. ;) I could also supplement my income with website design - but I haven't opened that business yet either

I appreciate any and all time you take and any suggestions you offer.
-Jen
 

DandR

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I -- like you am aspiriring - and as hard (as it seems) the experienced Inn Keepers try to discourage you -- I am--like you -- not detered in my hope to find the perfect B&B -- My husband and I are looking for an established business - which I am finding are plentiful -- but hard to purchase without substantial money down -- hence the delay in our dream -- as we save the 20% down -- If you can find land and build -- I think you may find the path easier -- Through my research -- I think any B&B can be successful ( ie - stay relatively busy ) if the marketing plan is good and you know your market in the area you are seeking to build -- GOOD LUCK --
 

Morticia

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You know, because you are trying to open in as yet uncharted waters, why not contact the local SBA (Small Business Assoc) or the local Extension Service and ask if anyone has done that modeling for the area. Is there a real demand for lodging where you want to build? What else is around to support the lodging? Great that you will make a wonderful breakfast (insure you are actually allowed to us non-inspected foods for guests) but what do guests do for lunch & dinner? What do they do for entertainment?
Hubs' best friend owns a resort where there is 'nothing' to do. He feeds guests breakfast AND dinner and lets them use his water sports equipment. Guests take off for hiking or just hang out on the tiny beach. The place has been in operation around 50 years. IT is the destination. He is booked solid a year in advance. It can be done but it takes time.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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location location location
$$ $$ $$ - it costs money to build, to buy, to open. Even to buy a so0called turnkey there is a great cost involved. If you have all of that and can pay your bills with OTHER INCOME should you have no guests for a while or enough to pay them, then you have it lined up.
The overhead is HIGH in a B&B. Typically one person must work to make it unless your home is 100% paid for.

Not sure who DanR is and why she is telling you we are discouraging and trying to deter. I guess we are to only say we make muffins and sip lemonade all day and chat and visit cuz we just love to 'entertain.' Entertaining is the least of what we do as innkeepers.
GO AND LOOK and see how many B&B's are for sale...then do some research on the turnover rate. It was mentioned they are plentiful. So be prepared for that. This is not a business you typically stay in forever.
People in your home, being on your BEST at all times can wear you down. 5 years of having the lawns mowed, the house totally dusted and spotless, everything in its place, your shoes always on...these are some of the things that begin to get to you and give you a desire to leave work at the office.
There are many great things about owning and running your own business. As Innkeepers - we put more than hired help into it as we want it to succeed.
Too many have come to this forum and another thinking it is good pocket change, open up Suzie's spare bedroom now that she is at college and in come the guests. That is a total misconception.
I will say that farmstays are very popular. We have quite a few near us, more and more newly built opening up every day. Within a year or two at the most they shut their doors. They thought it was easy money. It sucked them dry financially.
Ask away - there are a variety here on the forum who can help. All the best.
 

aquarijen

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$$ $$ $$ - it costs money to build, to buy, to open. Even to buy a so0called turnkey there is a great cost involved. If you have all of that and can pay your bills with OTHER INCOME should you have no guests for a while or enough to pay them, then you have it lined up.
The overhead is HIGH in a B&B. Typically one person must work to make it unless your home is 100% paid for.

Not sure who DanR is and why she is telling you we are discouraging and trying to deter. I guess we are to only say we make muffins and sip lemonade all day and chat and visit cuz we just love to 'entertain.' Entertaining is the least of what we do as innkeepers.
GO AND LOOK and see how many B&B's are for sale...then do some research on the turnover rate. It was mentioned they are plentiful. So be prepared for that. This is not a business you typically stay in forever.
People in your home, being on your BEST at all times can wear you down. 5 years of having the lawns mowed, the house totally dusted and spotless, everything in its place, your shoes always on...these are some of the things that begin to get to you and give you a desire to leave work at the office.
There are many great things about owning and running your own business. As Innkeepers - we put more than hired help into it as we want it to succeed.
Too many have come to this forum and another thinking it is good pocket change, open up Suzie's spare bedroom now that she is at college and in come the guests. That is a total misconception.
I will say that farmstays are very popular. We have quite a few near us, more and more newly built opening up every day. Within a year or two at the most they shut their doors. They thought it was easy money. It sucked them dry financially.
Ask away - there are a variety here on the forum who can help. All the best..
I don't think I'm looking in the right place - I was looking on the Commercial MLS and also googling - I have not found any B&Bs for sale in my area or surrounding counties (although there are a few larger motels/hotels)? I have not found Bed and Breakfasts to be plentiful here either. There are around 20 in the Gatlinburg area, around 3 that I could find in Knoxville and a little place with two rooms in Anderson County.
Is there a better place to look for Bed and Breakfasts for sale? Am I missing something here? Of course, all my favorite B&Bs have been in business for years and are not for sale at this time. It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
As far as a farmstay - I'm not sure it would be 100% a farmstay. More like a hobby farm - for me to share with my guests, but also a "draw".
I can't say that I think it would be easy money... My brother owns a pizza restaurant and my grandfather owned vacation cabins on his property behind his ice cream store. I still remember he would go in to make sure it was fit for our young chambermaid eyes, lol. I remember the conversations after I went to bed about just what folks would do to the poor cabins. But that was not the norm, and mostly, I remember being proud of the cabins, proud to make them look nice and proud to carry luggage to the cabin and help folks to feel at home. I don't get the idea that it is easy work in the least. Especially when you are tired, emotionally drained, stressed or jjust under the weather. And you still have to do what you have to do- you can't call in sick...
But there are downsides to working for others, as well. There is not the pride of ownership, the feeling of making something with your labor, hands and ingenuity or the control over it. You cannot control who you answer to and you still serve customers. There are weeks that I work 60 to 70 hours, and then there is the commute. There are pros and cons to everything, surely. I just think I would prefer to work for me in a more varied and creative role.
But, with everything I do, I research it thoroughly. That's why I'm here! :)
 

YellowSocks

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Welcome to the forum!!!
As you say, lots of questions, tough to give enough answers.
We bought a house and converted it to a B&B, partly because it was cheaper that way. Also, it seemed less risky as if the B&B doesn't pan out at least we live in a house we like in a town we love. That might be a consideration for you... find the farm you love and convert it to being a B&B.
What we always tell everyone... zoning first. No zoning, no B&B. Period. End of discussion. If you have a farm in the boonies, there may not be any zoning, but be absolutely certain that there won't be an issue with that.
Second, check your state regulations. Here in Ohio as long as you have fewer than six rooms neither the Health nor the Fire Department have any issues with you. In other states (and cities) there are Health Inspections required, as well as regulations about what you can and cannot serve. Some states require a commercial kitchen!
Third, create a budget. Assume you will spend twice that much. I'm incredibly frugal and I spent twice what I hoped to.
One of the very first innkeepers I spoke with said you want to have your B&B in a place where there are things to do or else the guests will expect YOU to be their entertainment. She was in a touristy town, but at night when the streets were rolled up, it wore on her sometimes. As a farm, you'll be your guests' entertainment, and you may have to provide dinners as well. People don't want to drive a long way to dinner... many of my guests don't want to drive at all, but the walking distance restaurants are limited...
And as I've posted before (with apologies to the regulars), I read in a B&B how-to book that there are five markets for B&B's, and to be successful you need to have as many as possible (at least 2 or 3). They are: tourists, romantic getaways, long-term hospital stays, business travelers, and universities. A farm could be either of the first two, but not likely the other three.
A general rule of thumb (and I mean very, very general) is that you need about five rooms to support an innkeeper full-time. Exceptions abound, such as those with little or no mortgage, or whose B&B is in such a high-demand/high-rent area that they can make quite a bit with fewer rooms. In your case, you would need to have a LOT of rooms to be successful enough to quit your job, unless you have no mortgage. I am assuming that you would not be full most of the time, and in your off season might be very empty.
We're glad you're here! Ask lots of questions. You'll find if you start a new forum/thread/post for each question you'll get higher quality answers (we tend to sidetrack and be unfocused enough without giving us multiple directions to head in to start out with!).
=)
Kk.
 

gillumhouse

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Welcome! I bought a house in a small city (pop 2300) and turned it into a B & B 12 years ago - started year #13 in July and this is my best year yet!
The ONLY reason we survived - and trust me, I am considered to be quite good at marketing nothing into something - was no mortgage (untill 2006 when I created a bathroom and remodeled the original) and I have yet to take a salary. I was able to make my 401k last for 10 years of "nibbling at it" to pay DH medical bills and B & B bills hat hit me up the side of the head from time to time. DH is on social security and we were not able to "breathe" until this year when I got mine! This year we may have made it on our own merits - finally. It is actually doing what it was supposed to - pay the expenses of the house and pay its own way (taxes, insurance, marketing) too.
I have 3 rooms and it takes (and has taken) a lot of time and energy to get where I am because I am not where anyone thought tourits would go.
The Tail of the Dragon is a great location for motorcycles - but mostly the young ones are going to do it. Had an older (not OLD) couple recently that did it and they said once was enough. You will need more than bikers to keep you going. Many of them are campers - BMW riders are more likely to camp while Goldwings like B & B.
I do rail-trail, motorcycles, overnight stabling, packages with covered bridges, packages with anythjing I think might catch someone's eye. You will need a diverse guest market and beating the bushes - HARD. The online Directory prices alone will make you race for DEPENDS!
Check zoning, health codes, fire codes, and building codes - for the county and for the State - FIRST!!!
Good luck and keep planning. Sounds as if you have your feet on the floor and your head on your shoulders - not in the clouds.
 

Sunshine

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Yay! I So Appreciate you all! The advice offered here is wonderful. Even though we have been open 10 weeks, I am still gettng good ideas and advice from all of you.
Aquarijen, it sound like you are on the right path. I just discovered this forum yesterday and already it has been a big help.
Thank you all for being so willing to offer advice and answer questions! Gillum, Congratulations on your 13 year! WOW that is quite an accomplishment from what I have read everywhere. Yes, burn out is high in this business. You must be doing something right! You inspire and encourage me!
We too bought our home first and lived in it for 4 years before opening as a B&B. Always wanted to open a B&B, so three years ago we began the process. 10 weeks into it and you might say we are still in the "honeymoon" phase! I am really enjoying it... well, except for ironing the sheets!
 

gillumhouse

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Yay! I So Appreciate you all! The advice offered here is wonderful. Even though we have been open 10 weeks, I am still gettng good ideas and advice from all of you.
Aquarijen, it sound like you are on the right path. I just discovered this forum yesterday and already it has been a big help.
Thank you all for being so willing to offer advice and answer questions! Gillum, Congratulations on your 13 year! WOW that is quite an accomplishment from what I have read everywhere. Yes, burn out is high in this business. You must be doing something right! You inspire and encourage me!
We too bought our home first and lived in it for 4 years before opening as a B&B. Always wanted to open a B&B, so three years ago we began the process. 10 weeks into it and you might say we are still in the "honeymoon" phase! I am really enjoying it... well, except for ironing the sheets!.
I keep the appointment with the dreaded iroining board for pillowcases only. If they want ironed sheets, go to the Greenbrier!
 

Morticia

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location location location
$$ $$ $$ - it costs money to build, to buy, to open. Even to buy a so0called turnkey there is a great cost involved. If you have all of that and can pay your bills with OTHER INCOME should you have no guests for a while or enough to pay them, then you have it lined up.
The overhead is HIGH in a B&B. Typically one person must work to make it unless your home is 100% paid for.

Not sure who DanR is and why she is telling you we are discouraging and trying to deter. I guess we are to only say we make muffins and sip lemonade all day and chat and visit cuz we just love to 'entertain.' Entertaining is the least of what we do as innkeepers.
GO AND LOOK and see how many B&B's are for sale...then do some research on the turnover rate. It was mentioned they are plentiful. So be prepared for that. This is not a business you typically stay in forever.
People in your home, being on your BEST at all times can wear you down. 5 years of having the lawns mowed, the house totally dusted and spotless, everything in its place, your shoes always on...these are some of the things that begin to get to you and give you a desire to leave work at the office.
There are many great things about owning and running your own business. As Innkeepers - we put more than hired help into it as we want it to succeed.
Too many have come to this forum and another thinking it is good pocket change, open up Suzie's spare bedroom now that she is at college and in come the guests. That is a total misconception.
I will say that farmstays are very popular. We have quite a few near us, more and more newly built opening up every day. Within a year or two at the most they shut their doors. They thought it was easy money. It sucked them dry financially.
Ask away - there are a variety here on the forum who can help. All the best..
I don't think I'm looking in the right place - I was looking on the Commercial MLS and also googling - I have not found any B&Bs for sale in my area or surrounding counties (although there are a few larger motels/hotels)? I have not found Bed and Breakfasts to be plentiful here either. There are around 20 in the Gatlinburg area, around 3 that I could find in Knoxville and a little place with two rooms in Anderson County.
Is there a better place to look for Bed and Breakfasts for sale? Am I missing something here? Of course, all my favorite B&Bs have been in business for years and are not for sale at this time. It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
As far as a farmstay - I'm not sure it would be 100% a farmstay. More like a hobby farm - for me to share with my guests, but also a "draw".
I can't say that I think it would be easy money... My brother owns a pizza restaurant and my grandfather owned vacation cabins on his property behind his ice cream store. I still remember he would go in to make sure it was fit for our young chambermaid eyes, lol. I remember the conversations after I went to bed about just what folks would do to the poor cabins. But that was not the norm, and mostly, I remember being proud of the cabins, proud to make them look nice and proud to carry luggage to the cabin and help folks to feel at home. I don't get the idea that it is easy work in the least. Especially when you are tired, emotionally drained, stressed or jjust under the weather. And you still have to do what you have to do- you can't call in sick...
But there are downsides to working for others, as well. There is not the pride of ownership, the feeling of making something with your labor, hands and ingenuity or the control over it. You cannot control who you answer to and you still serve customers. There are weeks that I work 60 to 70 hours, and then there is the commute. There are pros and cons to everything, surely. I just think I would prefer to work for me in a more varied and creative role.
But, with everything I do, I research it thoroughly. That's why I'm here! :)
.
aquarijen said:
I don't think I'm looking in the right place - I was looking on the Commercial MLS and also googling - I have not found any B&Bs for sale in my area or surrounding counties (although there are a few larger motels/hotels)? I have not found Bed and Breakfasts to be plentiful here either. There are around 20 in the Gatlinburg area, around 3 that I could find in Knoxville and a little place with two rooms in Anderson County.
Is there a better place to look for Bed and Breakfasts for sale? Am I missing something here? Of course, all my favorite B&Bs have been in business for years and are not for sale at this time. It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
I actually found my place using a Google search "B&B for sale Maine". You could try that (adjust the query for where YOU want to live!
) Otherwise, try bbonline in their 'B&B for sale' section. Ditto bedandbreakfast.com. That will also give you an idea what MAY or may not be in your area.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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www.bbonline.com has a great for sale section and it lists those postes in the last 30 days - so thaty is helpful, you can pop on there and see what is NEW.
www.bedandbreakast.com has them listed by state.
stats associations have some for sale on their websites
and there are a few others like B&B marketplace who has a whole magazine full of them they mail out.
Most directories on line (these are websites that you pay to list your B&B - so they market on the whole for us and guests can buy gift certificates from them and search and array of B&B's when planning a trip. www.BnBFinder.com
www.Lanierbb.com
and those I put above.
 

EmptyNest

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I -- like you am aspiriring - and as hard (as it seems) the experienced Inn Keepers try to discourage you -- I am--like you -- not detered in my hope to find the perfect B&B -- My husband and I are looking for an established business - which I am finding are plentiful -- but hard to purchase without substantial money down -- hence the delay in our dream -- as we save the 20% down -- If you can find land and build -- I think you may find the path easier -- Through my research -- I think any B&B can be successful ( ie - stay relatively busy ) if the marketing plan is good and you know your market in the area you are seeking to build -- GOOD LUCK --.
Others have given good feedback already. We are not discouragers, just truth tellers.
Too many people want to go into this business with blinders on. Can't do that. This is a real committement and not a money maker.
We all here had a dream to open an inn and have done it. We are trying to help others avoid some of the pitfalls we have found.
Follow your dream, but do it realisitically. You have to have money..no one is going to give you anything, you have to read and study, you have to get information straight from the source...no second hand knowledge.
Zoning and state requirements are the VERY FIRST THING you need to check on BEFORE any purchase is made or you may live to regret what you have done.
Ask questions and we will be happy to give you our honest opinions.
Best wishes
 

aquarijen

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www.bbonline.com has a great for sale section and it lists those postes in the last 30 days - so thaty is helpful, you can pop on there and see what is NEW.
www.bedandbreakast.com has them listed by state.
stats associations have some for sale on their websites
and there are a few others like B&B marketplace who has a whole magazine full of them they mail out.
Most directories on line (these are websites that you pay to list your B&B - so they market on the whole for us and guests can buy gift certificates from them and search and array of B&B's when planning a trip. www.BnBFinder.com
www.Lanierbb.com
and those I put above..
Cool - I checked these out last night as I poked about this site more and found the resources section. It's all here - I just had to find it. ;)
There are two B&Bs for sale within driving distance of me. One, although beautiful, is not in a location *I* would have thought to visit, it would be an incredible commute to work and it only has two rooms. The other is in a prime location in Sevierville, but it is not to my taste (is decorated with angels and "kountry kitch" and bears, whereas I'm more into the antiques, lovingly maintained old things authentic handmade stuff and gardens- so, to each etheir own) and since it is sold with all the furnishings, I feel like I'd be paying for things I would feel like I'd want to replace immediately (furnishings look old, in need of repair, wallpaper peeling, etc) and they want close to 900,000 for it... I've never been to it, though it shares the same association as some I have been to and did like (though, what that means, I am not sure).
Now, we do have historic districts in town near the University and the Old City. Vol game nights have all hotels for miles booked solid, but then I could not have livestock animals like I had wanted (that part is more a "me" thing - *I* like them, lol).
A historic house would be great - I've renovated a couple and have experience with that and there is a lot I can do myself (and a lot I know better than to attempt again!)
But there is no rush. :)
One thing I think would be important is to plan, plan, plan *before* the perfect property came to be, and not jump at just anything. Nothing saying I have to buy anything this year, or next year or even the year after. I do have a job and it isn't in jeopardy. Meanwhile, though, it never hurts to make a plan (or a few for a couple scenarios) and to continue to save up a larger down payment.
Fun (trivial) things to do, too, to keep interest and keep the dream alive - long term, would be to perfect breakfast, make the quilts for the beds, sew the robes, embroider the tableclothes, etc.
Thank you all for the welcome and the kind words!!! I'll be here and participating and soaking up all the knowledge I can. :) When the time comes that I can contribute, I certainly will.
 

greyswan

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Hi and welcome!! We looked for b&b's thru all of the above links. The state b&b associations were good resources and almost bought an inn that was listed thru an association link but that fell thru. After attending 2 workshops for inspiring innkeepers we were better prepared to pursue this... we had down on paper what we wanted... 4-5 room inn, turnkey operation and within driving distance to family in WVa. DH retired last June and we have his retirement to get us by during the slow months. I don't have to work outside the home, but am looking at setting up an alternative health practice (I am an advanced Reiki practitioner) on a part-time basis either as a mobile business or at the inn.
We looked at a couple of places that could be turned into an inn, but it would have meant my getting a full time job and DH to work part-time and we were looking at 9months to a year to open. We wanted to open right away. We found our inn through HistoricalProperties.com - most are homes but there were a couple of working inns, like ours. Realtor.com was another site we looked at for homes to refit into an inn.
 

aquarijen

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Hi and welcome!! We looked for b&b's thru all of the above links. The state b&b associations were good resources and almost bought an inn that was listed thru an association link but that fell thru. After attending 2 workshops for inspiring innkeepers we were better prepared to pursue this... we had down on paper what we wanted... 4-5 room inn, turnkey operation and within driving distance to family in WVa. DH retired last June and we have his retirement to get us by during the slow months. I don't have to work outside the home, but am looking at setting up an alternative health practice (I am an advanced Reiki practitioner) on a part-time basis either as a mobile business or at the inn.
We looked at a couple of places that could be turned into an inn, but it would have meant my getting a full time job and DH to work part-time and we were looking at 9months to a year to open. We wanted to open right away. We found our inn through HistoricalProperties.com - most are homes but there were a couple of working inns, like ours. Realtor.com was another site we looked at for homes to refit into an inn..
Ooooo, I'm loving historicproperties.com - I didn't find anything very close to me (one log cabin in Del Rio), but it's on the list of places to look at frequently, thanks!!!
 

swirt

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location location location
$$ $$ $$ - it costs money to build, to buy, to open. Even to buy a so0called turnkey there is a great cost involved. If you have all of that and can pay your bills with OTHER INCOME should you have no guests for a while or enough to pay them, then you have it lined up.
The overhead is HIGH in a B&B. Typically one person must work to make it unless your home is 100% paid for.

Not sure who DanR is and why she is telling you we are discouraging and trying to deter. I guess we are to only say we make muffins and sip lemonade all day and chat and visit cuz we just love to 'entertain.' Entertaining is the least of what we do as innkeepers.
GO AND LOOK and see how many B&B's are for sale...then do some research on the turnover rate. It was mentioned they are plentiful. So be prepared for that. This is not a business you typically stay in forever.
People in your home, being on your BEST at all times can wear you down. 5 years of having the lawns mowed, the house totally dusted and spotless, everything in its place, your shoes always on...these are some of the things that begin to get to you and give you a desire to leave work at the office.
There are many great things about owning and running your own business. As Innkeepers - we put more than hired help into it as we want it to succeed.
Too many have come to this forum and another thinking it is good pocket change, open up Suzie's spare bedroom now that she is at college and in come the guests. That is a total misconception.
I will say that farmstays are very popular. We have quite a few near us, more and more newly built opening up every day. Within a year or two at the most they shut their doors. They thought it was easy money. It sucked them dry financially.
Ask away - there are a variety here on the forum who can help. All the best..
I don't think I'm looking in the right place - I was looking on the Commercial MLS and also googling - I have not found any B&Bs for sale in my area or surrounding counties (although there are a few larger motels/hotels)? I have not found Bed and Breakfasts to be plentiful here either. There are around 20 in the Gatlinburg area, around 3 that I could find in Knoxville and a little place with two rooms in Anderson County.
Is there a better place to look for Bed and Breakfasts for sale? Am I missing something here? Of course, all my favorite B&Bs have been in business for years and are not for sale at this time. It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
As far as a farmstay - I'm not sure it would be 100% a farmstay. More like a hobby farm - for me to share with my guests, but also a "draw".
I can't say that I think it would be easy money... My brother owns a pizza restaurant and my grandfather owned vacation cabins on his property behind his ice cream store. I still remember he would go in to make sure it was fit for our young chambermaid eyes, lol. I remember the conversations after I went to bed about just what folks would do to the poor cabins. But that was not the norm, and mostly, I remember being proud of the cabins, proud to make them look nice and proud to carry luggage to the cabin and help folks to feel at home. I don't get the idea that it is easy work in the least. Especially when you are tired, emotionally drained, stressed or jjust under the weather. And you still have to do what you have to do- you can't call in sick...
But there are downsides to working for others, as well. There is not the pride of ownership, the feeling of making something with your labor, hands and ingenuity or the control over it. You cannot control who you answer to and you still serve customers. There are weeks that I work 60 to 70 hours, and then there is the commute. There are pros and cons to everything, surely. I just think I would prefer to work for me in a more varied and creative role.
But, with everything I do, I research it thoroughly. That's why I'm here! :)
.
aquarijen said:
It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
I have a 1.5 hr commute each way (but fortunately I can work from home 3 days a week). I'm not sure if you have done a lot of commuting in the past, but here is my take on it. I can do the time driving the car, that by itself is no problem. The problem is the loss of time. Losing 3 hours a day every day is 15 hours in a week. As an innkeeper, even if you are only open on weekends, that is 15 hours where you can't clean, mow, repair, prepare, be a parent/spouse ...
Also you mentioned a significant other. I think most of us on this forum had a plan where one person would be the innkeeper and the other would pretty much carry on with life as usual. The problem is that it rarely works out like that. My DW was supposed to be the "official" innkeeper. The way it worked out in reality was that I have jobs to do the instant I get in the door. She sees it as I get to "escape" when I go to work and I see it as I have innkeeping jobs waiting for me when I am "done" with work for the day. We are careful to be sensitive to the view from each others shoes but it can lead to stress from time to time. So play it safe and make sure you overestimate how much work will fall to your significant other.
 

Morticia

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$$ $$ $$ - it costs money to build, to buy, to open. Even to buy a so0called turnkey there is a great cost involved. If you have all of that and can pay your bills with OTHER INCOME should you have no guests for a while or enough to pay them, then you have it lined up.
The overhead is HIGH in a B&B. Typically one person must work to make it unless your home is 100% paid for.

Not sure who DanR is and why she is telling you we are discouraging and trying to deter. I guess we are to only say we make muffins and sip lemonade all day and chat and visit cuz we just love to 'entertain.' Entertaining is the least of what we do as innkeepers.
GO AND LOOK and see how many B&B's are for sale...then do some research on the turnover rate. It was mentioned they are plentiful. So be prepared for that. This is not a business you typically stay in forever.
People in your home, being on your BEST at all times can wear you down. 5 years of having the lawns mowed, the house totally dusted and spotless, everything in its place, your shoes always on...these are some of the things that begin to get to you and give you a desire to leave work at the office.
There are many great things about owning and running your own business. As Innkeepers - we put more than hired help into it as we want it to succeed.
Too many have come to this forum and another thinking it is good pocket change, open up Suzie's spare bedroom now that she is at college and in come the guests. That is a total misconception.
I will say that farmstays are very popular. We have quite a few near us, more and more newly built opening up every day. Within a year or two at the most they shut their doors. They thought it was easy money. It sucked them dry financially.
Ask away - there are a variety here on the forum who can help. All the best..
I don't think I'm looking in the right place - I was looking on the Commercial MLS and also googling - I have not found any B&Bs for sale in my area or surrounding counties (although there are a few larger motels/hotels)? I have not found Bed and Breakfasts to be plentiful here either. There are around 20 in the Gatlinburg area, around 3 that I could find in Knoxville and a little place with two rooms in Anderson County.
Is there a better place to look for Bed and Breakfasts for sale? Am I missing something here? Of course, all my favorite B&Bs have been in business for years and are not for sale at this time. It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
As far as a farmstay - I'm not sure it would be 100% a farmstay. More like a hobby farm - for me to share with my guests, but also a "draw".
I can't say that I think it would be easy money... My brother owns a pizza restaurant and my grandfather owned vacation cabins on his property behind his ice cream store. I still remember he would go in to make sure it was fit for our young chambermaid eyes, lol. I remember the conversations after I went to bed about just what folks would do to the poor cabins. But that was not the norm, and mostly, I remember being proud of the cabins, proud to make them look nice and proud to carry luggage to the cabin and help folks to feel at home. I don't get the idea that it is easy work in the least. Especially when you are tired, emotionally drained, stressed or jjust under the weather. And you still have to do what you have to do- you can't call in sick...
But there are downsides to working for others, as well. There is not the pride of ownership, the feeling of making something with your labor, hands and ingenuity or the control over it. You cannot control who you answer to and you still serve customers. There are weeks that I work 60 to 70 hours, and then there is the commute. There are pros and cons to everything, surely. I just think I would prefer to work for me in a more varied and creative role.
But, with everything I do, I research it thoroughly. That's why I'm here! :)
.
aquarijen said:
It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
I have a 1.5 hr commute each way (but fortunately I can work from home 3 days a week). I'm not sure if you have done a lot of commuting in the past, but here is my take on it. I can do the time driving the car, that by itself is no problem. The problem is the loss of time. Losing 3 hours a day every day is 15 hours in a week. As an innkeeper, even if you are only open on weekends, that is 15 hours where you can't clean, mow, repair, prepare, be a parent/spouse ...
Also you mentioned a significant other. I think most of us on this forum had a plan where one person would be the innkeeper and the other would pretty much carry on with life as usual. The problem is that it rarely works out like that. My DW was supposed to be the "official" innkeeper. The way it worked out in reality was that I have jobs to do the instant I get in the door. She sees it as I get to "escape" when I go to work and I see it as I have innkeeping jobs waiting for me when I am "done" with work for the day. We are careful to be sensitive to the view from each others shoes but it can lead to stress from time to time. So play it safe and make sure you overestimate how much work will fall to your significant other.
.
swirt said:
Also you mentioned a significant other. I think most of us on this forum had a plan where one person would be the innkeeper and the other would pretty much carry on with life as usual. The problem is that it rarely works out like that. My DW was supposed to be the "official" innkeeper. The way it worked out in reality was that I have jobs to do the instant I get in the door. She sees it as I get to "escape" when I go to work and I see it as I have innkeeping jobs waiting for me when I am "done" with work for the day. We are careful to be sensitive to the view from each others shoes but it can lead to stress from time to time. So play it safe and make sure you overestimate how much work will fall to your significant other.
You know, you two seem to have a great rapport. It makes me happy.
 

swirt

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$$ $$ $$ - it costs money to build, to buy, to open. Even to buy a so0called turnkey there is a great cost involved. If you have all of that and can pay your bills with OTHER INCOME should you have no guests for a while or enough to pay them, then you have it lined up.
The overhead is HIGH in a B&B. Typically one person must work to make it unless your home is 100% paid for.

Not sure who DanR is and why she is telling you we are discouraging and trying to deter. I guess we are to only say we make muffins and sip lemonade all day and chat and visit cuz we just love to 'entertain.' Entertaining is the least of what we do as innkeepers.
GO AND LOOK and see how many B&B's are for sale...then do some research on the turnover rate. It was mentioned they are plentiful. So be prepared for that. This is not a business you typically stay in forever.
People in your home, being on your BEST at all times can wear you down. 5 years of having the lawns mowed, the house totally dusted and spotless, everything in its place, your shoes always on...these are some of the things that begin to get to you and give you a desire to leave work at the office.
There are many great things about owning and running your own business. As Innkeepers - we put more than hired help into it as we want it to succeed.
Too many have come to this forum and another thinking it is good pocket change, open up Suzie's spare bedroom now that she is at college and in come the guests. That is a total misconception.
I will say that farmstays are very popular. We have quite a few near us, more and more newly built opening up every day. Within a year or two at the most they shut their doors. They thought it was easy money. It sucked them dry financially.
Ask away - there are a variety here on the forum who can help. All the best..
I don't think I'm looking in the right place - I was looking on the Commercial MLS and also googling - I have not found any B&Bs for sale in my area or surrounding counties (although there are a few larger motels/hotels)? I have not found Bed and Breakfasts to be plentiful here either. There are around 20 in the Gatlinburg area, around 3 that I could find in Knoxville and a little place with two rooms in Anderson County.
Is there a better place to look for Bed and Breakfasts for sale? Am I missing something here? Of course, all my favorite B&Bs have been in business for years and are not for sale at this time. It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
As far as a farmstay - I'm not sure it would be 100% a farmstay. More like a hobby farm - for me to share with my guests, but also a "draw".
I can't say that I think it would be easy money... My brother owns a pizza restaurant and my grandfather owned vacation cabins on his property behind his ice cream store. I still remember he would go in to make sure it was fit for our young chambermaid eyes, lol. I remember the conversations after I went to bed about just what folks would do to the poor cabins. But that was not the norm, and mostly, I remember being proud of the cabins, proud to make them look nice and proud to carry luggage to the cabin and help folks to feel at home. I don't get the idea that it is easy work in the least. Especially when you are tired, emotionally drained, stressed or jjust under the weather. And you still have to do what you have to do- you can't call in sick...
But there are downsides to working for others, as well. There is not the pride of ownership, the feeling of making something with your labor, hands and ingenuity or the control over it. You cannot control who you answer to and you still serve customers. There are weeks that I work 60 to 70 hours, and then there is the commute. There are pros and cons to everything, surely. I just think I would prefer to work for me in a more varied and creative role.
But, with everything I do, I research it thoroughly. That's why I'm here! :)
.
aquarijen said:
It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
I have a 1.5 hr commute each way (but fortunately I can work from home 3 days a week). I'm not sure if you have done a lot of commuting in the past, but here is my take on it. I can do the time driving the car, that by itself is no problem. The problem is the loss of time. Losing 3 hours a day every day is 15 hours in a week. As an innkeeper, even if you are only open on weekends, that is 15 hours where you can't clean, mow, repair, prepare, be a parent/spouse ...
Also you mentioned a significant other. I think most of us on this forum had a plan where one person would be the innkeeper and the other would pretty much carry on with life as usual. The problem is that it rarely works out like that. My DW was supposed to be the "official" innkeeper. The way it worked out in reality was that I have jobs to do the instant I get in the door. She sees it as I get to "escape" when I go to work and I see it as I have innkeeping jobs waiting for me when I am "done" with work for the day. We are careful to be sensitive to the view from each others shoes but it can lead to stress from time to time. So play it safe and make sure you overestimate how much work will fall to your significant other.
.
swirt said:
Also you mentioned a significant other. I think most of us on this forum had a plan where one person would be the innkeeper and the other would pretty much carry on with life as usual. The problem is that it rarely works out like that. My DW was supposed to be the "official" innkeeper. The way it worked out in reality was that I have jobs to do the instant I get in the door. She sees it as I get to "escape" when I go to work and I see it as I have innkeeping jobs waiting for me when I am "done" with work for the day. We are careful to be sensitive to the view from each others shoes but it can lead to stress from time to time. So play it safe and make sure you overestimate how much work will fall to your significant other.
You know, you two seem to have a great rapport. It makes me happy.
.
Well the view from each others shoes is easier because we switch shoes. When school is in session and she's teaching she gets to escape to a job and I am here working from home answer phone calls and dealing with popins and early check-ins on Friday...
 

gillumhouse

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www.bbonline.com has a great for sale section and it lists those postes in the last 30 days - so thaty is helpful, you can pop on there and see what is NEW.
www.bedandbreakast.com has them listed by state.
stats associations have some for sale on their websites
and there are a few others like B&B marketplace who has a whole magazine full of them they mail out.
Most directories on line (these are websites that you pay to list your B&B - so they market on the whole for us and guests can buy gift certificates from them and search and array of B&B's when planning a trip. www.BnBFinder.com
www.Lanierbb.com
and those I put above..
Cool - I checked these out last night as I poked about this site more and found the resources section. It's all here - I just had to find it. ;)
There are two B&Bs for sale within driving distance of me. One, although beautiful, is not in a location *I* would have thought to visit, it would be an incredible commute to work and it only has two rooms. The other is in a prime location in Sevierville, but it is not to my taste (is decorated with angels and "kountry kitch" and bears, whereas I'm more into the antiques, lovingly maintained old things authentic handmade stuff and gardens- so, to each etheir own) and since it is sold with all the furnishings, I feel like I'd be paying for things I would feel like I'd want to replace immediately (furnishings look old, in need of repair, wallpaper peeling, etc) and they want close to 900,000 for it... I've never been to it, though it shares the same association as some I have been to and did like (though, what that means, I am not sure).
Now, we do have historic districts in town near the University and the Old City. Vol game nights have all hotels for miles booked solid, but then I could not have livestock animals like I had wanted (that part is more a "me" thing - *I* like them, lol).
A historic house would be great - I've renovated a couple and have experience with that and there is a lot I can do myself (and a lot I know better than to attempt again!)
But there is no rush. :)
One thing I think would be important is to plan, plan, plan *before* the perfect property came to be, and not jump at just anything. Nothing saying I have to buy anything this year, or next year or even the year after. I do have a job and it isn't in jeopardy. Meanwhile, though, it never hurts to make a plan (or a few for a couple scenarios) and to continue to save up a larger down payment.
Fun (trivial) things to do, too, to keep interest and keep the dream alive - long term, would be to perfect breakfast, make the quilts for the beds, sew the robes, embroider the tableclothes, etc.
Thank you all for the welcome and the kind words!!! I'll be here and participating and soaking up all the knowledge I can. :) When the time comes that I can contribute, I certainly will.
.
You contribute now with your questions. Truly you do. It stimulates talk and sometimes we even come up with something new to say.
 

YellowSocks

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$$ $$ $$ - it costs money to build, to buy, to open. Even to buy a so0called turnkey there is a great cost involved. If you have all of that and can pay your bills with OTHER INCOME should you have no guests for a while or enough to pay them, then you have it lined up.
The overhead is HIGH in a B&B. Typically one person must work to make it unless your home is 100% paid for.

Not sure who DanR is and why she is telling you we are discouraging and trying to deter. I guess we are to only say we make muffins and sip lemonade all day and chat and visit cuz we just love to 'entertain.' Entertaining is the least of what we do as innkeepers.
GO AND LOOK and see how many B&B's are for sale...then do some research on the turnover rate. It was mentioned they are plentiful. So be prepared for that. This is not a business you typically stay in forever.
People in your home, being on your BEST at all times can wear you down. 5 years of having the lawns mowed, the house totally dusted and spotless, everything in its place, your shoes always on...these are some of the things that begin to get to you and give you a desire to leave work at the office.
There are many great things about owning and running your own business. As Innkeepers - we put more than hired help into it as we want it to succeed.
Too many have come to this forum and another thinking it is good pocket change, open up Suzie's spare bedroom now that she is at college and in come the guests. That is a total misconception.
I will say that farmstays are very popular. We have quite a few near us, more and more newly built opening up every day. Within a year or two at the most they shut their doors. They thought it was easy money. It sucked them dry financially.
Ask away - there are a variety here on the forum who can help. All the best..
I don't think I'm looking in the right place - I was looking on the Commercial MLS and also googling - I have not found any B&Bs for sale in my area or surrounding counties (although there are a few larger motels/hotels)? I have not found Bed and Breakfasts to be plentiful here either. There are around 20 in the Gatlinburg area, around 3 that I could find in Knoxville and a little place with two rooms in Anderson County.
Is there a better place to look for Bed and Breakfasts for sale? Am I missing something here? Of course, all my favorite B&Bs have been in business for years and are not for sale at this time. It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
As far as a farmstay - I'm not sure it would be 100% a farmstay. More like a hobby farm - for me to share with my guests, but also a "draw".
I can't say that I think it would be easy money... My brother owns a pizza restaurant and my grandfather owned vacation cabins on his property behind his ice cream store. I still remember he would go in to make sure it was fit for our young chambermaid eyes, lol. I remember the conversations after I went to bed about just what folks would do to the poor cabins. But that was not the norm, and mostly, I remember being proud of the cabins, proud to make them look nice and proud to carry luggage to the cabin and help folks to feel at home. I don't get the idea that it is easy work in the least. Especially when you are tired, emotionally drained, stressed or jjust under the weather. And you still have to do what you have to do- you can't call in sick...
But there are downsides to working for others, as well. There is not the pride of ownership, the feeling of making something with your labor, hands and ingenuity or the control over it. You cannot control who you answer to and you still serve customers. There are weeks that I work 60 to 70 hours, and then there is the commute. There are pros and cons to everything, surely. I just think I would prefer to work for me in a more varied and creative role.
But, with everything I do, I research it thoroughly. That's why I'm here! :)
.
aquarijen said:
It is important to me that I be able to retain my job for a little while, so it has to be in my general area - I have to be able to commute - not more than 1.5 hours each way.
I have a 1.5 hr commute each way (but fortunately I can work from home 3 days a week). I'm not sure if you have done a lot of commuting in the past, but here is my take on it. I can do the time driving the car, that by itself is no problem. The problem is the loss of time. Losing 3 hours a day every day is 15 hours in a week. As an innkeeper, even if you are only open on weekends, that is 15 hours where you can't clean, mow, repair, prepare, be a parent/spouse ...
Also you mentioned a significant other. I think most of us on this forum had a plan where one person would be the innkeeper and the other would pretty much carry on with life as usual. The problem is that it rarely works out like that. My DW was supposed to be the "official" innkeeper. The way it worked out in reality was that I have jobs to do the instant I get in the door. She sees it as I get to "escape" when I go to work and I see it as I have innkeeping jobs waiting for me when I am "done" with work for the day. We are careful to be sensitive to the view from each others shoes but it can lead to stress from time to time. So play it safe and make sure you overestimate how much work will fall to your significant other.
.
swirt said:
I have innkeeping jobs waiting for me when I am "done" with work for the day.
Dh works 10 hours days (small commute, thank goodness) then comes home and works some more. He works 8 hours OT on Fridays, then gets home earlier than usual to help clean before Friday check ins. He makes any coffee needed before he leaves for work. I try to be sensitive to his mood and not expect too much... he's great about doing what needs done. But I couldn't do it without him at this point (maybe in a few years), and I really depend on him. We tell ourselves we're investing for the future...
=)
Kk.
 

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