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Paying an innkeeper

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Kesous

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Greetings again...
My question has to do with the fact that our up-and-coming Bed and Breakfast will be different from most of yours in that the owner will not be residing there at all. Rather than converting a house which is already occupied into the B&B, the owner, who is my employer, has built a bed and breakfast building from scratch. The idea is to hire someone who will live there and do the daily work. The owner's home is very close by, but she will not be working on the premises, as she has many other activities taking her time, including other businesses.
Do any of you have any suggestions as to how the person hired in that position should be paid? In other words, rent and utilities will be taken care of, so that needs to be part of the wage paid to the inkeeper, but how should that be factored in? What might be the best wage structure for this position?
thanks, Kesous
 

Morticia

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You might want to join PAII for some of this info. They have lots of 'reports' you can buy that cover a multitude of options for running the B&B.
How to hire your innkeeper, what to pay, what benefits to offer, job description. After all, the person you are hiring is working 24x7x52. They, unlike the owners here, will be looking for time off and benefits. Me, I close down when I want a day off. Your paid innkeeper won't have that luxury so it needs to be written into a contract what the innkeeper is responsible for and for how many hours of each day that will happen.
The innkeeper's 'room and board' will be covered, and that's big, but there aren't really a lot of paid jobs out there where you live at work every single day with no time off. Even dorm parents at private schools have time off. You have to account for the 'round the clock' nature of the position. Your innkeeper may 'sleep on the job' but she'll be required to get up and help out if a guest needs her. So, no real 'me' time is allowed.
Unlike most of us, you'll probably also have to hire someone to cover for the innkeeper so she CAN take time off weekly to get her own stuff done.
 

seashanty

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are you the owner or the innkeeper to be?
there are a couple forum members who are not the owners who might give you some insight.
i have heard of some arrangements for room/board, salary and then a commission based on room rentals that seemed fair to me. oh, and i've seen some ads on paii for innkeepers that show salary.
 

Kesous

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are you the owner or the innkeeper to be?
there are a couple forum members who are not the owners who might give you some insight.
i have heard of some arrangements for room/board, salary and then a commission based on room rentals that seemed fair to me. oh, and i've seen some ads on paii for innkeepers that show salary..
I am actually neither owner nor innkeeper-to-be. I work in a different capacity for the owner, as the GM for a different business that she has immediately next door to, and connected by a path to, the B&B. The business I manage is a small artisan retail center with art galleries, shops, and a cafe. Among other things, I do the marketing and may be doing marketing also for the B&B. At the moment I am doing research for the owner in order to help learn how to run this new business.
thanks for all your replies,
Kesous
 

Innkeeper To Go

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It depends entirely on the size of the inn and the responsibilities of the inn manager. Will the owner handle marketing and any other aspects or will the person she will be hiring be responsible for everything?
Startups are a lot more work but don't generally have a lot of money coming in. So the owner will likely want someone who can produce income quickly and willing to accept some sort of deferred payment. That can come in the form of bonuses, profit sharing, or the like. Some innkeepers will gladly accept additional vacation time in lieu of higher wages, so that's another area the owner should consider as extremely negotiable.
Many places think that by offering a home onsite, they don't have to pay very much in salary. But remember that the inn manager, who won't necessarily reap the benefits of her startup work 5 years down the road, will live onsite for the benefit of the inn. Like owner innkeepers, he/she will give up a great deal of privacy and work very long hours. The last thing you want is someone who feels taken advantage of or getting burned out so do the best you can for someone who will build the business from the ground up.
I always advocate paying a living wage to all employees, to the best of the inn's ability to do so. What is a living wage in one area, though, would put someone in another area into poverty.
So besides the size of the inn, your general geographic area will also determine what's fair and what's not.
But I'm guessing your owner will want someone good, someone who will stay for a while, and someone who can produce revenue and keep the guests happy. She should consider just how much she can afford to pay but also how to incent a professional manager, assuming that's what she wants. And again, she should try to be as generous as possible as the more she's able to pay, the better chance she's going to have to attract the very best.
Best of luck to you in your search!
 

seashanty

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yes. i did a start up from the ground up, renovations included. i was supposed to be a partner and would get a percentage down the road. well, it turned sour and i left. i don't know if i'll see that percentage some day or not. it's old news to the regulars on the forum so i won't rehash it, but a detailed, written contract, updated as time and circustances change, is absolutely essential for the protection of all parties.
 

Innkeeper To Go

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yes. i did a start up from the ground up, renovations included. i was supposed to be a partner and would get a percentage down the road. well, it turned sour and i left. i don't know if i'll see that percentage some day or not. it's old news to the regulars on the forum so i won't rehash it, but a detailed, written contract, updated as time and circustances change, is absolutely essential for the protection of all parties..
Agreed. One trap many owners set is for the innkeeper to get all of the bonus at year's end or only once the inn is profitable. For a startup, that's not reasonable since major upfront expenses in the first year make profitability unlikely. So a staggered plan to get there makes more sense.
I think bonuses should be paid quarterly at minimum and profit-sharing should be set up so that the innkeeper is protected if, for any reason, he/she needs to leave the position before the end of the year.
And definitely any written contract should be revisited quarterly to ensure that all parties to the contract agree that the terms are still fair and working, especially since this is a new venture for an owner who (it seems) doesn't know the business herself.
 
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