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duhwitt

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Hi all!
I'm Paula - new here...aspiring innkeeper looking to do a career change in the next few years (leaving corporate america) to open/run a B&B. To that end, I'm taking a hospitality class at the local community college. Part of what we need to do is interview B&B owners - and there aren't many in the Chicago area (where I'm from). I've heard from one who doesn't want to help and a second one who wants to help but "life" is getting in the way (which I understand).
So I'm taking a different route - I am going to post my questions here and hope that someone - or even multiple people - will take a few minutes to answer them. This is the only aspiring innkeepers forum I've found, so if there are others, please let me know!! Thanks for helping a potential newbie :)
PS - I will be using any information you provide me, however, that is limited to a 10 page report for my professor and a 5 minute presentation to the class (which probably won't get into details)
Questions:
1. Name of B&B (optional)
2. How long you have owned/run the B&B
3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one?
4. Location of B&B
5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B?
6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's?
7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)?
8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms
b. average price of room
c. average daily occupancy
d. guest rate retention percent
e. percentage of new guests per year
9. Do you accept reservations online? What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations?
10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels for overflow guests)
11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu?
12. How do you handle cancellations?
13. Do you live onsite?
14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests?
15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)?
16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm)
17. Do you decorate for the different seasons?
18. Are there any certifications you have?
19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to new customers?
20. What type of taxes do you have to pay?
21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of?
22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind????
Thanks in advance for any help you offer - I'm excited to hear what everyone has to say!
Regards,
Paula
 

Morticia

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If I could fill out the questionnaire without my inn name, just location, that would work for me.
 

muirford

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2. How long you have owned/run the B&B
6 years in September
3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one?
bought existing business
4. Location of B&B
eastern panhandle of West Virginia
5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B?
6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's?
Yes, and still do.
7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)?
Yes, housekeepers, and occasionally maintenance or gardener
8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms
6
b. average price of room
This is not so simple to answer: weekdays $115 - $135; weekends $145 - $175; ADR over the last six months is around $150.
c. average daily occupancy
50%
d. guest rate retention percent
e. percentage of new guests per year
9. Do you accept reservations online? What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations?
Yes. A few hours.
10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels for overflow guests)
The local university sends us a few, but it is a negligible amount of business.
11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu?
Full with fruit course, entree with breakfast meat, baked goods, oj and coffee, alternating between sweet and savory. Menu depends more on number of guests but the average stay is only one to two days, so I may repeat it every two days during busy season.
12. How do you handle cancellations?
7 days notice required for no charge; we don't charge if we rebook. We have charged very few cancellation fees in our six years.
13. Do you live onsite?
Yes.
14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests?
Not too much - upgrade if possible.
15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)?
Robes, bath amenities, postcards.
16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm)
Breakfast 6 - 10, checkouts 10 - 11; room cleaning 11 - 3, checkins 3 - 9. Phone calls and email during all of that time; next day breakfast prep anytime between 11 and 6.
17. Do you decorate for the different seasons?
No except for Christmas; I change the front door wreath seasonally.
18. Are there any certifications you have?
Local health department; inspected by state association and Select Registry.
19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to new customers?
Yes.
20. What type of taxes do you have to pay?
Commercial property, personal property: guests pay lodging tax of 6% in addition to state sales tax of 6%.
21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of?
Tons of them, from how to set up your business to what your local requirements are for health and human safety.
22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind????
No. Even if this was a smaller, less busy B&B, I think a one-man show is very stressful. There are some who do it, but the last two owners here were single women (albeit with hired help) and in my opinion it hurt the business.
 

Morticia

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1. Name of B&B (optional):
2. How long you have owned/run the B&B: 3.5 years
3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one?: Existing
4. Location of B&B: Maine
5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B?: Fired from career at major corporation, thought a B&B might be a nice segue into retirement (ha, ha)
6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's?: Yes, but not a lot.
7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)? Lawn person, snow removal, looking for housekeeping help.
8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms: 7
b. average price of room: in season- $157, off season- $137
c. average daily occupancy
d. guest rate retention percent (do you mean repeats?) 30%
e. percentage of new guests per year 70%
9. Do you accept reservations online? Yes. What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations? 6 hours.
10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels for overflow guests) Other B&B's, local chamber, sometimes hotels
11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu? Full, plated breakfast. Menu repeats depending on length of guest stay. We don't repeat the menu while you're here, but we may serve the same breakfast 4-5 days in a row if it's all new guests.
12. How do you handle cancellations? I scream and tear my hair out and come on this forum to complain. (Sorry, what exactly did you mean by the question?)
13. Do you live onsite? Yes
14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests? Discount rooms, sometimes upgrade, sometimes give small gifts.
15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)? Mugs, soap.
16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm)
OK, here's the tough one...you need to know right off that there is no 'set' schedule to an innkeeper's day. And that is because you are dealing with 'the public'. So, hubs is up at 6 AM to start breakfast, I get up at 7:30. Guests start arriving for 8 AM breakfast at 7 AM. Phone rings constantly from 7:30 AM to after midnight. (People in CA don't seem to know there is a time difference between this coast and that coast.)
Breakfast may be over by 8:30, it may still be going on at 10:30. Sometimes we start serving at 7:30 if guests need to get on the road. Around 9:30 I start stripping rooms and hubs finishes up the breakfast (clearing tables, pouring coffee, etc.) Once the kitchen is clean, we both hit the rooms to clean in earnest. While we are cleaning, guests are checking out (don't worry, we don't clean your room until you leave!) and today's guests are ringing the doorbell insisting they spoke with someone who said they could check-in at 10 AM. (I am not joking.) The doorbell rings constantly while we clean, ditto the phone ringing. And guests still need directions and help with their luggage. Telemarketers call constantly. People wanting you to donate money or free rooms ('What a great idea, I just thought about this! You could donate a free room to our auction! Isn't that a great idea? I bet you never heard that one before!!! We don't want your money, just a free room!') Then the mailman rings the bell so you can sign for something from the Feds saying they're going to shut your business down because the PO's didn't pay their taxes. Wait, it's only 10:30! Laundry is being done simultaneously while rooms are being cleaned (then you hit a snag because some klutz spilled a glass of wine all over the carpet and the bedding...everything needs to be stripped off the bed and the carpet machine needs to be hauled up out of the basement, set up and run...there's an hour's work you didn't plan for and 3 loads of laundry you have to dry and get back on the bed before, hold on, they're ringing the bell to get in right now! 5 hours early!)
Everytime I stop to answer the doorbell or take a reservation is another 20-30 minutes I get behind in the cleaning. (Which is why I start at 9:30 AM to finish by 2 PM.)
We generally finish cleaning the room around 2 PM. Then hubs heads out for the grocery store while I do the check-out paperwork from this morning and print out the incoming guest forms for today. (All the while the doorbell continues to ring as does the phone.) Oh, there's a walk-in looking for a room for tonight. Have to go show the rooms. At the same time the cookies for this afternoon are done and the oven timer is going off. Burn the cookies and let in the walk-ins or forget the walk-ins and save the cookies? Walk-ins don't wait around, BTW. Take 20 minutes to show the rooms, guests dither and discuss and then decide your place is too whatever (expensive, small, big, don't like the breakfast on the board, rooms are blue/green/pink) and away they go.
For the sake of argument, let's say it's now the official check-in time of 3 PM. Put smile on face, get unburned cookies plated and head out to answer the door. Guest who booked room for 2 show up with 3. 'Oh, you don't have a roll away for the teenager? I thought for sure you'd have one.' Stop. Wait for me to respond as to how I'm going to handle this. OK, change their room to one with 2 beds and charge extra for the extra person. 'The hotel never charges.' Really? 'Here, let me get one on the line for you.' In the meantime, other guests have begun to arrive, needing info about what to do and where to eat and the buzzer is going off to switch the laundry.
Hubs returns from grocery store and helps with check-ins. Light bulb burned out in one room needs to be replaced. Phone rings and shuts credit card machine off, start over with guest wondering if I'm charging them twice.
5PM- 2 rooms checked-in, remaining rooms still on the road. Hubs is entering biz data into database and paying bills. Throws checkbook my way and says, 'Make sure there's enough money in there.'
Eat dinner at 6 PM (notice this is the first time I have mentioned the innkeeper eating.) Still waiting for guests to check-in. Phone rings. Guest stuck in traffic in NYC. Will be a 'little late.' Yeah, right. If you're in NYC at 6 PM, you won't be here until at least 11. More calls...plane delayed in Atlanta, looks like midnight arrival into Portland. OK, that's a 1 :30 arrival here because I know their luggage is going elsewhere and they'll be standing in line to fill out forms.
7 PM- hubs is dragging but goes and folds towels and talks to guests. I'm starting to iron pillowcases. Hubs preps breakfast casserole. We open second bottle of wine. (Joking...no time to drink!)
8 PM- walk-ins at door needing room for 4 adults. Stroke of luck! The suite is open and they take it. Hubs has to prep more breakfast.
9 PM- Phone is still ringing but not quite as much. Hubs is sound asleep but I'm waiting for the late arrivals. (We now have a keypad entry so I can give them the code and they can let themselves in. Hope they are quiet.)
10 PM- Doorbell rings...guest can't get into room...'key doesn't work'.
11 PM- still waiting so I do some work on the website. Guests arrive. Love room. All is good.
I know I have left out some important stuff that we do, but I can't remember what it is...
17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? Somewhat.
18. Are there any certifications you have? State & town have licenses.
19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to new customers? Yes.
20. What type of taxes do you have to pay? A little explanation...you have to send in the lodging taxes, so those are not taxes I 'pay' pers se, just taxes I collect for the state. Taxes I have to pay are corporate taxes, use tax, income tax, sales tax on things I buy.
21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of? Tons. Whole other topic.
22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind???? I refer you to my day above...but the real answer is no. You need a big enough place to support you and then you need help because the place is that big. Unless you have a pile of cash and can get a really low mortgage payment on the building, you have to really work this as much as you can.
I should mention that the above 'day' is in season. In the off season, hubs & I go out, work on projects around the house, visit with friends, take vacation, argue, normal couples stuff. What I forgot to mention above is that we also attend business meetings with other B&B's and businesses around town, we take classes and try to get out once/week so we don't go crazy. We do most of the guest socializing during breakfast, at check-in and in the evening. We collect payment on check-in so guests can leave when they are ready and don't have to find us while we're cleaning.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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Welcome Paula.
Alot of questions to be answered.
Have you taken any aspiring innkeeper courses? I ask as there is a great one coming up in January - I know it was already posted on this forum, in VA. I will try to find that thread and post the link here for you. There you will find tons of helpful info.
 

duhwitt

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Welcome Paula.
Alot of questions to be answered.
Have you taken any aspiring innkeeper courses? I ask as there is a great one coming up in January - I know it was already posted on this forum, in VA. I will try to find that thread and post the link here for you. There you will find tons of helpful info..
I've been looking at the aspiring innkeeper courses and just recently found one "close" to home (I'm in IL)...I don't get vacation from work so for me to take days off to fly someplace and then pay for the class is out of the question right now. So I'm waiting for the on in IL to have their next class (since I can drive).
Thanks everyone for their responses so far!!!
Paula
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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REPLIES IN ALL CAPS
Questions:
1. Name of B&B (optional)
2. How long you have owned/run the B&B 4.5 YEARS
3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one? EXISTING
4. Location of B&B VIRGINIA
5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B?
6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's? YES
7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)? NOPE
8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms SIX
b. average price of room 110-140+10% TAX A DISCOUNT OF $10 ALWAYS GIVEN OR MORE
c. average daily occupancy
d. guest rate retention percent
e. percentage of new guests per year
9. Do you accept reservations online? What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations? YES, 1 MINUTE CONFIRMATION, 3 HOUR IF I AM OUT, 6 HOURS IF I AM ASLEEP, IT ALL DEPENDS WHEN IT SHOOTS IN. IF I AM HERE, IT IS IMMEDIATELY PROCESSED
10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels for overflow guests) VERY VERY LITTLE, THIS IS THE LEAST AMOUNT OF BUSINESS A B&B GETS. WE GET OUR GUESTS FROM MARKETING ONLINE. 99% OF OUR GUESTS COME FROM OUT OF THE AREA. NOT MANY LOCAL TIES. MOST LOCALS CHOOSE A HOTEL FIRST
11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu? FULL HOT BREAKFAST, MENU CAN BE REPEATED EVERY SINGLE DAY IF IT IS A NEW SET OF GUESTS. I NEVER REPEAT THE SAME MENU TO THE SAME GUEST HOWEVER, I MAKE A NOTE OF WHAT I SERVE FOR THEIR NEXT STAY. IF A GUEST IS HERE 7 NIGHTS, THEY GET 7 DIFF MENUS
12. How do you handle cancellations? SCREAM. OH DO YOU MEAN WHAT IS OUR POLICY? WELL WE FOLLOW OUR POLICY, 7 DAY CANCELLATION PERIOD OR LOSE THE ONE NIGHT DEPOSIT
13. Do you live onsite? YES
14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests? SPECIAL? LIKE? ALL GUESTS ARE TREATED SPECIAL. DO YOU MEAN DISCOUNT? SURE.
15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)? YES, PENS, TSHIRTS FOR MYSELF AND POLOS. GUESTS SELDOM PURCHASE OTHER LOGO'D ITEMS. YOU CAN SPEND A LOT IN OVERHEAD AND NOT SELL MANY.
16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm) NOT REALLY. BREAKFAST IS USUALLY LASTING UNTIL 11AM AND THEN GUESTS CHECK OUT. OR SOMETIMES THEY WANT AN EARLY AND CHECK OUT AT 8AM. IT IS ALL RELATIVE. IT IS BUSY, AND YOU CAN ALWAYS DO MORE AND MOER AND MORE AND HAVE NO TIME TO YOURSELF WHATSOEVER. AS IT IS, YOU HAVE TO GET TO THE STORE BY THE SKIN OF YOUR TEETH!
17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? SOMEWHAT
18. Are there any certifications you have? CERTIFICATIONS TO RUN A B&B? LIKE HEALTH DEPT? SURE.
19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to new customers? DEPENDS. LOCAL CHAMBER IS ONE BLOCK FROM HERE AND DOES NOTHING FOR US, ZILCH. VISITORS CENTRS IN TWO NEARBY CITIES BRING IN A COUPLE GUESTS A YEAR.
20. What type of taxes do you have to pay? ROOM TAX? SALES, LODGING TAX AND MEALS TAX. BUSINESS? ALL REG BUSINESS TAXES.
21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of? LOTS OF LEGALITIES: PERMITTING, LICENSING, ZONING, LIABILITY,CONFIDENTIALITY
22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind???? NOPE. ONLY IF THIS ONE PERSON HAS HELP. THERE IS NO WAY. IMPOSSIBLE. YOU MUST HAVE HELP.
 

EmptyNest

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duhwitt said:
Hi all!
I'm Paula - new here...aspiring innkeeper looking to do a career change in the next few years (leaving corporate america) to open/run a B&B. To that end, I'm taking a hospitality class at the local community college. Part of what we need to do is interview B&B owners - and there aren't many in the Chicago area (where I'm from). I've heard from one who doesn't want to help and a second one who wants to help but "life" is getting in the way (which I understand).
So I'm taking a different route - I am going to post my questions here and hope that someone - or even multiple people - will take a few minutes to answer them. This is the only aspiring innkeepers forum I've found, so if there are others, please let me know!! Thanks for helping a potential newbie :)
PS - I will be using any information you provide me, however, that is limited to a 10 page report for my professor and a 5 minute presentation to the class (which probably won't get into details)
I retired this year but will answer as I can
Questions:
1. Name of B&B (optional)
2. How long you have owned/run the B&B 7 year
3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one? We bought an existing B &B
4. Location of B&B Shenandoah Valley of Virginia
5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B? It was a dream of mine for over 10 years. By profession, I was a home economist and also had hospitalty coursework / training
6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's?ABSOLUTELY..that is is must and the reason that inspired my dream!
7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)? No, We / my husband and myself did it all ourselves
8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms 3
b. average price of room $125- $150
c. average daily occupancy We averaged about 35% occupancy while opened
d. guest rate retention percent We only had about 1 % repeat guests. Which I really never expected many repeats as we NEVER go to the same B & B twice unless a very special place where we are "connected" to the innkeepers
e. percentage of new guests per year 99%
9. Do you accept reservations online? YES ABSOLUTELY...this day and age you MUST!!! What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations? I responded IMMEDIATELY...usually never longer than 30 min.
10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels for overflow guests) We belong to the local Chamber of Commerce and they sent us guests, but other than that, very few locals EVER send guests...It is just not that type of community. Our guests came from the metro D.C. area 95% as a romantic get away.
11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu? We offered full plated breakfat and had about 7 different menus we rotated.
12. How do you handle cancellations? Usually as flexible as possible with no hassle if they let us know in advance and for a good reason. Not very appropriate for business but for our small business it was and my husband said "why ask for grief???" So we pretty much just said "thanks for letting us know" Hope you can come visit some other time. There were some cases where we charged their card for the one night deposit and then issued a gift certicate.
13. Do you live onsite? YES and have spaciou private owners quarters totally separate from guests in the house...an absolute must in my mind!!!
14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests? NO we provide the same high quality service for everyone.Maybe if they wanted something special for breakfast we would try to accommodate them
15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)?Our robes were monogrammmed..but No. I never thought it was necessary to spend the extra $$$ on these kinds of things given our small size.
16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm) You already have it. basically.
17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? Yes I decorated dining room especially for different seasons and holidays but that was really the only area
18. Are there any certifications you have? My MS is in home economics education and an associate in hospitaliy management. We belonged to our state B& B association which I think every innkeeper should do if they consider themselves a professional.
19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to new customers? NOt much. As we did not want "walk in" guests. We took guests by advance reservation only.
20. What type of taxes do you have to pay? Typcial: income, state income tax, state sales tax, local business tax, local lodging, meal tax.
21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of? Check zoning rules and regs BEFORE you buy or build anything!!! Dumb not to check directly with the local resources / gov't agencies
22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind???? HONESTLY...I DON'T THINK SO!!! But I know of some who do it..but they only have 1 or 2 rooms. If that is the case, then you could..other than that, you will burn out quicker than a candle lit on both ends in my opinion..that is..if you are doing this to make a living. And... 1-3 rooms unless in a high tourist location, will NOT make you a living. You need another income.
Good luck!! Read everything you can, attend aspiring workshops, and try doing an internship with a local innkeeper who is despartely searching for some cheap or FREE help!
Thanks in advance for any help you offer - I'm excited to hear what everyone has to say!
Regards,
Paula
 

gillumhouse

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Questions
1. Name of B&B (optional)

2. How long you have owned/run the B&B [COLOR= green]12 years[/COLOR]

3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one?
[COLOR= green]Started from scratch[/COLOR]

4. Location of B&B [COLOR= green]North central West Virginia[/COLOR]

5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B?
[COLOR= green]Stayed in one and decided I can do that[/COLOR]

6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's? [COLOR= green]Not before then but did after[/COLOR]

7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)?
Hire local kid to do lawn now that hubby cannot, hubby does dishes
and I do all else

8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms [COLOR= green]3[/COLOR]
b. average price of room [COLOR= green]$95 - $145 (if they have horses)[/COLOR]
c. average daily occupancy
[COLOR= green]no rhyme or reason with this one – either guests or no guests[/COLOR]
d. guest rate retention percent [COLOR= green]2%[/COLOR]
e. percentage of new guests per year
98% not in a “Tourist” destination
(it wasn’t anyway until I told people it was)

9. Do you accept reservations online? What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations?
Yes and I usually have an immediate turnaround –
usually within a very few hours if I am out of house

10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels
for overflow guests)
[COLOR= green]I am involved in EVERYTHING and no, it does not send guests[/COLOR]

11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu?
Full – Family-style = muffins, fruit dish, OJ & a non-citric juice,
entrée, fresh-ground coffee/tea

12. How do you handle cancellations?
Less than 48 hours or no-show a FULL reservation charge plus tax
otherwise N/C

13. Do you live onsite? [COLOR= green]Yes[/COLOR]

14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests?
Last year’s rate unless one of our Special People
then a deeper discount

15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)?
Give away – mini fly swatter with catchy phrase.
Lunch bags, polo & T-shirts, WV potter made mugs for sale

16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm)
Breakfast is served between 4am & 10am – guest choice
The rest of the day is doing what needs done when it can get done
and depending on doctor appointments, meetings, etc that get
in the way. Laundry is line dry if possible (no rain and not winter)
You are never done!

17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? [COLOR= green]Only Christmas[/COLOR]

18. Are there any certifications you have?
[COLOR= green]Food handlers card and we are “GREEN”[/COLOR]

19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to
new customers? [COLOR= green]Exposure only[/COLOR]

20. What type of taxes do you have to pay?
Highest rate possible on real estate because we are a business,
B & O (business & occupation) of 50 cents Per $100 GROSS
revenue to City, higher City fees because a business,
collect State sales tax, and usual others

21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of?
Do not spend first penny until you know what the ZONING is.
Then there is Health Dept, Fire Code, Building Code, State Rules,
County Rules, City Rules, Association Requirements
(Assoc membership is a MUST!)

22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind????
[COLOR= green]Only if it is 3 rooms or less, no mortgage, and not a lot of $$ required to live on –[/COLOR]
[COLOR= green]meaning there [/COLOR][COLOR= green]Is a retirement income. If this is to support yourself need more [/COLOR]
[COLOR= green]rooms and more rooms says NEED HELP[/COLOR]
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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Questions
1. Name of B&B (optional)

2. How long you have owned/run the B&B [COLOR= green]12 years[/COLOR]

3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one?
[COLOR= green]Started from scratch[/COLOR]

4. Location of B&B [COLOR= green]North central West Virginia[/COLOR]

5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B?
[COLOR= green]Stayed in one and decided I can do that[/COLOR]

6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's? [COLOR= green]Not before then but did after[/COLOR]

7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)?
Hire local kid to do lawn now that hubby cannot, hubby does dishes
and I do all else

8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms [COLOR= green]3[/COLOR]
b. average price of room [COLOR= green]$95 - $145 (if they have horses)[/COLOR]
c. average daily occupancy
[COLOR= green]no rhyme or reason with this one – either guests or no guests[/COLOR]
d. guest rate retention percent [COLOR= green]2%[/COLOR]
e. percentage of new guests per year
98% not in a “Tourist” destination
(it wasn’t anyway until I told people it was)

9. Do you accept reservations online? What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations?
Yes and I usually have an immediate turnaround –
usually within a very few hours if I am out of house

10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels
for overflow guests)
[COLOR= green]I am involved in EVERYTHING and no, it does not send guests[/COLOR]

11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu?
Full – Family-style = muffins, fruit dish, OJ & a non-citric juice,
entrée, fresh-ground coffee/tea

12. How do you handle cancellations?
Less than 48 hours or no-show a FULL reservation charge plus tax
otherwise N/C

13. Do you live onsite? [COLOR= green]Yes[/COLOR]

14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests?
Last year’s rate unless one of our Special People
then a deeper discount

15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)?
Give away – mini fly swatter with catchy phrase.
Lunch bags, polo & T-shirts, WV potter made mugs for sale

16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm)
Breakfast is served between 4am & 10am – guest choice
The rest of the day is doing what needs done when it can get done
and depending on doctor appointments, meetings, etc that get
in the way. Laundry is line dry if possible (no rain and not winter)
You are never done!

17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? [COLOR= green]Only Christmas[/COLOR]

18. Are there any certifications you have?
[COLOR= green]Food handlers card and we are “GREEN”[/COLOR]

19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to
new customers? [COLOR= green]Exposure only[/COLOR]

20. What type of taxes do you have to pay?
Highest rate possible on real estate because we are a business,
B & O (business & occupation) of 50 cents Per $100 GROSS
revenue to City, higher City fees because a business,
collect State sales tax, and usual others

21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of?
Do not spend first penny until you know what the ZONING is.
Then there is Health Dept, Fire Code, Building Code, State Rules,
County Rules, City Rules, Association Requirements
(Assoc membership is a MUST!)

22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind????
[COLOR= green]Only if it is 3 rooms or less, no mortgage, and not a lot of $$ required to live on –[/COLOR]
[COLOR= green]meaning there [/COLOR][COLOR= green]Is a retirement income. If this is to support yourself need more [/COLOR]
[COLOR= green]rooms and more rooms says NEED HELP[/COLOR].
I am ready to hijack here... Swirt will probably delete me.
GH Wrote: Full – Family-style = muffins, fruit dish, OJ & a non-citric juice,
entrée, fresh-ground coffee/tea
Okay FULL VEGETARIAN BREAKFAST - served family style.
I am going to be attacked, and I really do apologise, but I don't understand why everyone here who does not serve meat does not say they do not serve meat? A typical American breakfast consists of meat. Bacon. Ham. Sausage. - links, patties, ground sausage in the gravy....Chicken Fried Steak, Steak, Pork Chops, Chipped Beef, Scrapple, even Spam and Bologna (regional), typically a smoked meat for breakfast.
These days they make imitation meat for those who can't have it or don't want it - turkey sausage, turkey bacon, tofu sausage,veggie bacon strips...



 

Morticia

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We don't serve meat everyday, it depends on the main dish we make. And the pix I have of breakfast do not show meat so if meat isn't on the plate that day, no one should think they've been cheated. Today we had 4 guests. 75% did not want the sausage we offered. Yesterday we had 4 different guests and 50% said no to the meat dish.
I definitely HAVE had guests who asked about breakfast when booking and pretty much didn't book because the first things I mentioned were french toast and pancakes. I was excoriated for serving carbs for breakfast. Didn't I know how bad it was for a person to start the day eating carbs??? I didn't get a chance to mention a quiche or sausage, she hung up. It sounded like she wanted a slab of beef the way she was going on...
I wouldn't put 'vegetarian' breakfast on the website because that would cause even more problems with guests who truly are vegetarians vs the crowd that just doesn't eat pork.
Wait, didn't I say on the other forum I wasn't going to argue this one anymore?
 

duhwitt

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Wow - I'm blown away by how quickly everyone responded - thanks!
I guess I have some soul searching to do - since everyone is very...clear..on how this is not a 1 person job...and I'm just one person, I'm going to have to do some thinking to see if this really is in the cards for me in the future.
:) Thanks again!
Paula
 

gillumhouse

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Questions
1. Name of B&B (optional)

2. How long you have owned/run the B&B [COLOR= green]12 years[/COLOR]

3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one?
[COLOR= green]Started from scratch[/COLOR]

4. Location of B&B [COLOR= green]North central West Virginia[/COLOR]

5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B?
[COLOR= green]Stayed in one and decided I can do that[/COLOR]

6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's? [COLOR= green]Not before then but did after[/COLOR]

7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)?
Hire local kid to do lawn now that hubby cannot, hubby does dishes
and I do all else

8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms [COLOR= green]3[/COLOR]
b. average price of room [COLOR= green]$95 - $145 (if they have horses)[/COLOR]
c. average daily occupancy
[COLOR= green]no rhyme or reason with this one – either guests or no guests[/COLOR]
d. guest rate retention percent [COLOR= green]2%[/COLOR]
e. percentage of new guests per year
98% not in a “Tourist” destination
(it wasn’t anyway until I told people it was)

9. Do you accept reservations online? What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations?
Yes and I usually have an immediate turnaround –
usually within a very few hours if I am out of house

10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels
for overflow guests)
[COLOR= green]I am involved in EVERYTHING and no, it does not send guests[/COLOR]

11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu?
Full – Family-style = muffins, fruit dish, OJ & a non-citric juice,
entrée, fresh-ground coffee/tea

12. How do you handle cancellations?
Less than 48 hours or no-show a FULL reservation charge plus tax
otherwise N/C

13. Do you live onsite? [COLOR= green]Yes[/COLOR]

14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests?
Last year’s rate unless one of our Special People
then a deeper discount

15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)?
Give away – mini fly swatter with catchy phrase.
Lunch bags, polo & T-shirts, WV potter made mugs for sale

16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm)
Breakfast is served between 4am & 10am – guest choice
The rest of the day is doing what needs done when it can get done
and depending on doctor appointments, meetings, etc that get
in the way. Laundry is line dry if possible (no rain and not winter)
You are never done!

17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? [COLOR= green]Only Christmas[/COLOR]

18. Are there any certifications you have?
[COLOR= green]Food handlers card and we are “GREEN”[/COLOR]

19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to
new customers? [COLOR= green]Exposure only[/COLOR]

20. What type of taxes do you have to pay?
Highest rate possible on real estate because we are a business,
B & O (business & occupation) of 50 cents Per $100 GROSS
revenue to City, higher City fees because a business,
collect State sales tax, and usual others

21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of?
Do not spend first penny until you know what the ZONING is.
Then there is Health Dept, Fire Code, Building Code, State Rules,
County Rules, City Rules, Association Requirements
(Assoc membership is a MUST!)

22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind????
[COLOR= green]Only if it is 3 rooms or less, no mortgage, and not a lot of $$ required to live on –[/COLOR]
[COLOR= green]meaning there [/COLOR][COLOR= green]Is a retirement income. If this is to support yourself need more [/COLOR]
[COLOR= green]rooms and more rooms says NEED HELP[/COLOR].
I am ready to hijack here... Swirt will probably delete me.
GH Wrote: Full – Family-style = muffins, fruit dish, OJ & a non-citric juice,
entrée, fresh-ground coffee/tea
Okay FULL VEGETARIAN BREAKFAST - served family style.
I am going to be attacked, and I really do apologise, but I don't understand why everyone here who does not serve meat does not say they do not serve meat? A typical American breakfast consists of meat. Bacon. Ham. Sausage. - links, patties, ground sausage in the gravy....Chicken Fried Steak, Steak, Pork Chops, Chipped Beef, Scrapple, even Spam and Bologna (regional), typically a smoked meat for breakfast.
These days they make imitation meat for those who can't have it or don't want it - turkey sausage, turkey bacon, tofu sausage,veggie bacon strips...



.
Because sometimes I do serve meat! The couple who are in-house said they like venison so they will be getting deer chops with their egg bake. I am not anti-meat, it is just that I rarely serve it. Now if my venison ever gets here from Iowa this year - maybe my Peoria son will bring it in July - I will have sausage to serve. 1/3 of the meat is going to be sausage and 1/3 brats! I DO post low-fat, low cholesterol as my type of food on my web site. I describe breakfast and I do not mention meat so it is known in advance. The people I get are usually health/diet conscious and are not looking for the cream and butter (on the table) and fat. It is my niche - no fat so I rarely do bacon (have been known to - did turkey bacon last week because in conversation I heard "we sometimes eat turkey bacon". My guests are usually the older set (heart attack specials) or the fit & trim bikers who are health food people. We each serve what is wanted in our area or in our niche. My niche is accommodating special diets. I will be making a loaf of gluten-free bread next week.....
 

Morticia

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Wow - I'm blown away by how quickly everyone responded - thanks!
I guess I have some soul searching to do - since everyone is very...clear..on how this is not a 1 person job...and I'm just one person, I'm going to have to do some thinking to see if this really is in the cards for me in the future.
:) Thanks again!
Paula.
We're pretty helpful around here. Even if you find yourself rethinking and rethinking, stop by to see what questions we can answer.
AND, it would be great if you could give us a synopsis of what comes of your report and other reports in your class!
Depending on what your professor's specialty is, we might have some eye openers for you! And, likewise your professor for us.
 

gillumhouse

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Where in Illinois? I did what I call a 24-year sentence in Illinois. Sooo glad I finally got back to WV. Have all sorts of family there - kids, grandkids, cousins...
 

swirt

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Wow - I'm blown away by how quickly everyone responded - thanks!
I guess I have some soul searching to do - since everyone is very...clear..on how this is not a 1 person job...and I'm just one person, I'm going to have to do some thinking to see if this really is in the cards for me in the future.
:) Thanks again!
Paula.
I am not one to say it can be done by one person. It was my wife's plan to run the place herself, but I would say we are nearly 50/50 on how much effort I have to put into it. I do believe it is more than one person can handle completely and keep their happy disposition. That being said, I do know of people who have done it or are doing it on their own. (and there are 1 or 2 here who have yet to weigh in on this). It is possible but be warned.
 

YellowSocks

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Hi Paula! Welcome to the forum!
When I was first researching innkeeping I found the innkeepers here (we were on a different forum, but it's mostly the same people) and they helped me a TON in getting a feel for what it was like and what I would need. I also interviewed and toured several B&B's, which I found immensely helpful. Even if you don't do it as part of the class assignment, you should continue to pursue opportunities to meet innkeepers and talk with them, not just with a laundry list of questions, but with a naturally flowing interview of what they do and how they do it and why. It was really that helpful.
One reason it was helpful was that I spoke with and toured such different properties. One had individual tables in their dining room (their niche was romantic getaway), the others didn't. Every innkeeper did things differently, for different reasons. It was extremely educational.
If you truly can't find an inn to tour and an innkeeper to talk to in person, see if you can find someone to interview on the phone. Kathleen (Gillum House, Shinnston, WV) probably would if you catch her at a good time, and she leads innkeeping seminars. Or you could probably book a night at her place and in exchange (if she doesn't have a full house) get a mini-seminar of your own. You're welcome to call me, but I'm a newbie and probably not your best source.
Good luck with your class, but regardless of whatever grade you get, real life is more important. You need to see if your temperament is right, your budget realistic (no budget is, but it has to at least look halfway realistic), and if you can find your niche. Research a ton, then research some more.
1. Name of B&B (optional) College House Bed & Breakfast, Ashland, OH
2. How long you have owned/run the B&B Owned: 2 years. 1st room: <1 year (July). 2nd room: 8 mos (October). 3rd room: this coming Tuesday. 4th room: overdue, so very soon.
3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one? We bought a house and renovated it.
4. Location of B&B Ashland, Ohio, in a residential neighborhood between Ashland University and Ashland Theological Seminary.
5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B? I was looking for a home-based business where my kids could be involved, work hard, and learn a variety of useful skills.
6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's? Of course.
7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)? My husband mows the lawn, takes out the trash, makes the coffee, watches the kids, and helps with the cleaning. My kids help clean, for about 4 minutes.
8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms About to be 4
b. average price of room $110 I guess.
c. average daily occupancy unknown
d. guest rate retention percent unknown
e. percentage of new guests per year 100%
9. Do you accept reservations online? yes What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations? As soon as I see them. If I'm at my computer, within a few minutes. If I'm away from home (or asleep) it could be half a day.
10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels for overflow guests) Yes, and we're hoping to develop more.
11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu? Full. Fruit starter, entree, side meat, and bread. Until recently we've had a lot of one night stays, and not a lot of multiple rooms, so I usually make the same breakfast. We have a lot of multi-night stays coming up and they will not have the same breakfast (or fruit starter) while they are here. (Unless they really, really want it, I guess.)
12. How do you handle cancellations? Avoid them as much as possible. We take a one night deposit at time of booking, refundable within 7 days of scheduled stay. Have only had to refund a couple so far.
13. Do you live onsite? I have to in order to have a business in a residential neighborhood.
14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests? I don't know yet. Probably give them last year's rate, or a 10% discount. We have our first one next month, and one anticipated in December.
15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)? Not yet, but I'll probably end up with pens and shirts. I may have mugs or lunch bags, we'll see how it goes and what the cost is. I do have business cards and will have brochures.
16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm) Get up 5:30 or 6, make and serve breakfast, clean up breakfast, clean rooms, shop, fix things, talk on the phone, take care of my kids (the ds4x2: twin boys, age 4), answer questions, chat with guests, prep for the next day, chat on the forum, pay bills, run errands. Stay up too late.
17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? Not really, just Christmas. We may do Memorial Day/Flag Day/Fourth of July next year.
18. Are there any certifications you have? None that I'm aware of.
19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to new customers? They (the Chamber) say it does. At least one customer said they found me on the Chamber's website (which is odd since my website is easier to find than the Chamber's).
20. What type of taxes do you have to pay? I collect bed tax (3%) and food tax (.37 per person per night). I pay property, income and sales tax like anyone else. I also pay a LOT for business insurance.
21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of? If the zoning won't allow it, don't buy it. Check with the local officials about health and fire. Here in Ohio, under six rooms, zoning is the only real issue. But I had to get approval to have four rooms (12 guests) and a readable sign.
22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind???? Depends on the person. Some would say we're all nuts. I have relatives who can't understand why we let strangers in our house. Depends on the B&B. There's a regular on the forum who's run her own 3 room B&B for years. She works LONG days for seven months, then has a breather in the winter. For anything much bigger you'll need help. I'm a little nervous about next month when we'll be at full house a lot, but my dh works outside the home.
Good luck to you!
=) Kk.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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Joined
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Hi Paula! Welcome to the forum!
When I was first researching innkeeping I found the innkeepers here (we were on a different forum, but it's mostly the same people) and they helped me a TON in getting a feel for what it was like and what I would need. I also interviewed and toured several B&B's, which I found immensely helpful. Even if you don't do it as part of the class assignment, you should continue to pursue opportunities to meet innkeepers and talk with them, not just with a laundry list of questions, but with a naturally flowing interview of what they do and how they do it and why. It was really that helpful.
One reason it was helpful was that I spoke with and toured such different properties. One had individual tables in their dining room (their niche was romantic getaway), the others didn't. Every innkeeper did things differently, for different reasons. It was extremely educational.
If you truly can't find an inn to tour and an innkeeper to talk to in person, see if you can find someone to interview on the phone. Kathleen (Gillum House, Shinnston, WV) probably would if you catch her at a good time, and she leads innkeeping seminars. Or you could probably book a night at her place and in exchange (if she doesn't have a full house) get a mini-seminar of your own. You're welcome to call me, but I'm a newbie and probably not your best source.
Good luck with your class, but regardless of whatever grade you get, real life is more important. You need to see if your temperament is right, your budget realistic (no budget is, but it has to at least look halfway realistic), and if you can find your niche. Research a ton, then research some more.
1. Name of B&B (optional) College House Bed & Breakfast, Ashland, OH
2. How long you have owned/run the B&B Owned: 2 years. 1st room: <1 year (July). 2nd room: 8 mos (October). 3rd room: this coming Tuesday. 4th room: overdue, so very soon.
3. Did you build the B&B or did you buy an existing one? We bought a house and renovated it.
4. Location of B&B Ashland, Ohio, in a residential neighborhood between Ashland University and Ashland Theological Seminary.
5. What made you decide to open/run a B&B? I was looking for a home-based business where my kids could be involved, work hard, and learn a variety of useful skills.
6. Had you previously stayed at B&B's? Of course.
7. Do you have "help" (i.e. cleaning people, substitute innkeeper, maintenance, lawn etc)? My husband mows the lawn, takes out the trash, makes the coffee, watches the kids, and helps with the cleaning. My kids help clean, for about 4 minutes.
8. This question is optional, I know financial information can be senstitive..
a. # of rooms About to be 4
b. average price of room $110 I guess.
c. average daily occupancy unknown
d. guest rate retention percent unknown
e. percentage of new guests per year 100%
9. Do you accept reservations online? yes What is your average response/turnaround time to online reservations? As soon as I see them. If I'm at my computer, within a few minutes. If I'm away from home (or asleep) it could be half a day.
10. Do you have contacts in the local community that sends business your way (i.e. churches for weddings, hotels for overflow guests) Yes, and we're hoping to develop more.
11. Type of breakfast offered - and how often do you repeat the menu? Full. Fruit starter, entree, side meat, and bread. Until recently we've had a lot of one night stays, and not a lot of multiple rooms, so I usually make the same breakfast. We have a lot of multi-night stays coming up and they will not have the same breakfast (or fruit starter) while they are here. (Unless they really, really want it, I guess.)
12. How do you handle cancellations? Avoid them as much as possible. We take a one night deposit at time of booking, refundable within 7 days of scheduled stay. Have only had to refund a couple so far.
13. Do you live onsite? I have to in order to have a business in a residential neighborhood.
14. Do you do anything special for repeat guests? I don't know yet. Probably give them last year's rate, or a 10% discount. We have our first one next month, and one anticipated in December.
15. Do you have items personalized for your B&B (i.e. pens, notepaper, bags, robes, etc)? Not yet, but I'll probably end up with pens and shirts. I may have mugs or lunch bags, we'll see how it goes and what the cost is. I do have business cards and will have brochures.
16. Can you give me a brief overview of your day? (i.e. breakfast 6-9am, reservations and checkout 9am-11am, cleaning 11am-3pm, checkin 3pm-9pm) Get up 5:30 or 6, make and serve breakfast, clean up breakfast, clean rooms, shop, fix things, talk on the phone, take care of my kids (the ds4x2: twin boys, age 4), answer questions, chat with guests, prep for the next day, chat on the forum, pay bills, run errands. Stay up too late.
17. Do you decorate for the different seasons? Not really, just Christmas. We may do Memorial Day/Flag Day/Fourth of July next year.
18. Are there any certifications you have? None that I'm aware of.
19. Does being a part of the local area associations (i.e. visitor bureau, chamber of commerce) provide access to new customers? They (the Chamber) say it does. At least one customer said they found me on the Chamber's website (which is odd since my website is easier to find than the Chamber's).
20. What type of taxes do you have to pay? I collect bed tax (3%) and food tax (.37 per person per night). I pay property, income and sales tax like anyone else. I also pay a LOT for business insurance.
21. Are there any legal issues an aspiring innkeeper should be aware of? If the zoning won't allow it, don't buy it. Check with the local officials about health and fire. Here in Ohio, under six rooms, zoning is the only real issue. But I had to get approval to have four rooms (12 guests) and a readable sign.
22. And finally - can 1 person do this without losing her mind???? Depends on the person. Some would say we're all nuts. I have relatives who can't understand why we let strangers in our house. Depends on the B&B. There's a regular on the forum who's run her own 3 room B&B for years. She works LONG days for seven months, then has a breather in the winter. For anything much bigger you'll need help. I'm a little nervous about next month when we'll be at full house a lot, but my dh works outside the home.
Good luck to you!
=) Kk..
Running a place on your own, to me meant with no help.
Do all the single innkeepers run the place with no help?
Then there are those here who are "a couple" where one spouse pretty much does everything on their own as their other half works outside the B&B. More of the same. You would think that the support would be there (mostly not), you would think that when issues cropped up that other person could step in (mostly not). Every situation is unique. But for those who have TWO innkeepers running their place, they will still say it is draining. But can be more rewarding if someone is there to lend a hand.
This is where catlady says to make sure both are on board.
 
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