How to Start a Bed and Breakfast

Starting or establishing any business and excelling in it is not something that happens overnight. Set yourself up for success may take a little longer but is well worth the time you will invest. Starting a bed and breakfast, an inn or small hotel is no exception, especially if you are new to the hospitality industry.

With countless factors to consider before opening a property to the public, and even more to contend with once your are running your business day-today, it can easily become overwhelming.

But there’s no need to give up on your dream. In this area of Huffman Management, we’ll provide a complete and comprehensive, step by step guide to starting and running a B&B / Inn , so you can put your best foot forward and start enjoying the benefits of a successful small business sooner rather than later.

Huffman Manor Inn



Huffman House Bed and Breakfast
How to determine is your bed and breakfast will make money.

Starting and owning a bed and breakfast. Is it right for you?

 You may want to ponder about if it’s actually something you want to commit your time and energy to. It’s a large undertaking that will require your devoted attention day in and day out. Many people may find the concept outweighs the practice.

Let’s start by asking questions:

  • Are you good at dealing with pressure?
  • Do you like meeting strangers and making them friends?
  • Do you love people and enjoy being around them on a daily basis?
  • How do you feel about mundane tasks, such as cooking and cleaning?
  • Are you an expert on your area / destination?
  • Do you like the idea of being self-employed?
  • Do you have a strong support base around you?
  • Can you learn from your mistakes?
  • Are you a multitasker?
  • Do you enjoy taking care of others?
  • Are you willing to try new strategies and technologies to achieve success?
  • Are you “attention to details” kind-a person?

It is important you know what to expect from the job of hospitality. This is not simply so you know if you’re a good fit, but so that you can do the job well and give yourself the best opportunity to be successful. This is an incredibly difficult endeavor to undertake with a partner and even harder to do alone.

Another consideration is why you are opening a , small hotel, inn or bed and breakfast. Are you embarking on this journey because the lifestyle appeals to you and you love guest service, or because you see it simply as an opportunity to make money? Loving what you do is generally the recipe needed for favorable results, same say if you love what you do means you will never work another day in your life (cheese but so true). You define your success. Think about what drives you, is it ok  as long as you are receiving positive reviews and keeping your head above water, or are you driven to be an award winning property.


Can You Make Money With a B&B?

Even if you love people and have a hospitality heart that will not pay the bills. Making a profit is the goal, right? Hopefully by providing an memorable guest experience, alone with giving your guest a spotless clean room and becoming popular, your B&B can produce a profit through the right management and strategies. Before that becomes a reality, you need to establish a steady revenue income. This means regular bookings or consistent occupancy.

So will you make money running your bed and breakfast?

Understanding the numbers, it’s probably unrealistic to expect to earn your entire living off one B&B property, unless you have 10 rooms (oe more and are in a market that allows you to charge a higher rate. Let’s use an example of a 10-room property with pricing at $150 per night:

  • With every room filled that’s $1500 per night.
  • With 365 nights per year there are a total of 3,650 room nights.
  • If every room is booked every night, gross annual income will equal $547,500.
  • Considering bed and breakfast occupancy rates run below 50%: closer to 42% depending on your area, this reduces your total to $229,950.
  • Then you have to factor in expenses which could be significant, before you have your net income.

The amount of money or profit you can expect to make all depends on the size of your property, the location in and how luxurious your property is,  Starting a bed and breakfast is more of a lifestyle decision rather than a savvy business choice and you’re likely to make any real profit when you sell it.

Before we get to far into the weeds take the time to complete a work sheet that will help you determine your revenue and help you to start looking at your expenses.


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