Is THIS the reason you aren’t running your bed and breakfast yet?

Owning a bed and breakfast is like getting sick, dealing with a loss or passing gas… there is never a perfect time for it to happen!

I’m not saying that there aren’t some very valid reasons for not moving forward at a particular time – I am a perfect case in point.  From the time I decided I wanted to own a bed and breakfast to opening my doors, it was a five-year journey.  I knew I didn’t want to use my suburban home as a bed and breakfast, so that meant a move would be required.  As a single parent of two teenagers, I didn’t feel it was fair to make them move (again) and I wasn’t willing to jeopardize the ability to provide for them by quitting my job.

Family and finances are the top two reasons people tell me they can’t move forward.

Some of the other reasons include:

  • Only one-half of the couple is interested in the idea
  • They are uncertain if the location and/or layout of their home is suitable as a bed and breakfast
  • They are afraid that they won’t make enough money
  • They dread the amount of work that might be required
  • They are apprehensive about having strangers in their home
  • They worry that they won’t be able to get people to come and stay at their bed and breakfast
  • They are concerned if they have all the skills required to make it a success
  • They are unsure of how to go about finding a more suitable property

What do these statements have in common?  I had them.  Most of the people I talk to have them.  They are based on fear of the unknown.

The definition of fear is:

Merriam-Webster Dictionary: an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger; a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid

I understand that fear – if you’ve read my no-cost e-book “3 questions that everyone who wants to own a bed and breakfast asks – or should”, I speak about having to take not one – but two! – motivational workshops about overcoming your fears in order to be able to take the final steps to owning my bed and breakfast.

I also understand how hard it is to get the right information that will help you determine the answers to the questions listed above.  I read the books, took workshops and talked to other bed and breakfast owners.  But no one could tell me that my fears were groundless (and I wouldn’t have believed them even if they did!)

It was only when I had my ah-ha moment that I talk about in the e-book that I realized I had access to most of the tools available to help me answer my questions.  Since then, I have been able to refine them to meet the needs of people who are in the same spot I was in.

There are two main categories that the fears listed above tend to fall under:

  • Understanding the pros and cons of owning a bed and breakfast for you – not someone else.  Do the soul-searching you need to do to uncover whether you have the right personality and can handle the amount of work required, and
  • Do the research to find out if your current home or another property will provide the type of guests you want in your home and if these people will generate the income you want.

Even with all this work completed, it will take a certain leap of faith to take that final step of owning your very own bed and breakfast.  However, it will be a much more calculated risk, and you will know where your risks potentially lie.

So tell me, what’s your biggest fear about owning a bed and breakfast?  What would help you overcome that fear?


  1. Susan Poole Post author

    Hi Sandra:

    You’ve done a good job of identifying the pros and cons of your property. One of the hardest lessons I had to learn was that people have to have a reason to come to your area before they look for somewhere to stay. Knowing how to find out who is coming to your area, and how they make their decision on where to stay means you will be able to set your price based on the value you are offering, not just what the competition charges.

    So far, you have identified three potential groups – golfers, visitors to residents of the nursing/rehab home and people coming to go to the park. Depending on your location, the golfers and park attendees may be seasonal, so you need to keep looking for other sources of potential guests. Since guests are crucial to your bottom line, I recommend you check out Learn How Much Your Future B&B Can Earn. There you will learn another important lesson – how to attract guests you want to host in your B&B. Knowing who your ideal guest is means they will want what you want to offer – this way what they want and what you offer coincides, so that your B&B matches your vision and is a joy to run. This will save you thousands of dollars and a lot of extra stress.

    I’d be glad to answer any questions you may have about Learn How Much Your Future B&B Can Earn. Just drop me an e-mail or respond to this thread and I will get back to you as soon as possible.


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