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Bed and Breakfast: 3 Use your own house.

Updated on April 18, 2013

Make money using your own house.

George the new I.T. man who works down the road as just started a new six month contract that could make you £430.00 a month.

Would you be interested.

As the recession bites hard people are looking for ways to subsidies there income without having to fork out large amounts of money to do so.

Your own home as to be the best asset you have, definitely the least amount of money to lay out if you intend to create a business.

Depending on how far you intend to go, full time, part time, just in the week, just weekends; there's not too many part time business opportunities out there that will suite you down to the ground. Creating a bed and breakfast from your own home will give you that opportunity and probably the best part time, possibly full time income you could ever hope to make.

There's five main areas to attack.

  • Planning if it's needed
  • Alterations to the building
  • Fire risk assessment
  • Room design and fittings

  • Marketing & advertising

Planning in the U.K. states (I'm sure it's smiler in the U.S.) that if you're using more than 50% of your house for paying guest your classed as a commercial business; which means, a full planning application for change of use, business rates and a Fire Risk Assessment. This maybe the way you want to go and why not, but if your only thinking of using one or two rooms in your house, providing that's under 50% of use you should be fine.

The less structural work you have to do to the building, when your starting out, the better. However having en-suite rooms, if possible, is your first goal.

You may have bigger plans but starting out small will give you a good idea weather or not you'd like to take it a stage further. It will also builds up a nest egg for that bigger project.

Room design and fitting out your Bed and Breakfast

I'm not going to tell you how to decorate your rooms, what curtains to hang or carpet to have on the floor; because everyone has there own taste.
But I can tell you what work for us, and that is, to be bold. To give you some ideas start collecting every kind of design and craft book you can get your hands, charity shops and design companies on the internet will show you classics from past and future. Guests love to see quirky decor and local craft work displayed; especially if it's done by the proprietors them selves; their talking points and can have massive marketing potential.

Aand it doesn't have to cost the earth.

The picture you see on the right is our sitting room.
If we have potential guests call to the door; or a local company call to check us out; no matter if I have to or not, I always show them into this room and say.
"I won't be two minutes".
Then disappear long enough for them to have a good look around.
That's the first room they see and it tells a story of a large, clean, contemporary accommodation.

It may sound like I'm blowing my own trumpet' but creating that wow factor on entering the building goes a long way towards making a sale.

At what cost you may ask.

If you look carefully you'll see that the floor boards have been painted white. All we did was took out the carpet, removed all the old tacks, nails, and staples from years of laying carpet. Gave the floor a good clean with hot soapy water; waited a couple of days for it to dry out then gave it a coat of Johnson's brilliant white floor paint.
Putting on the first coat shows up all the little holes made in the floor boards, again from years of laying carpet. The next day fill all the holes with putty, yes putty. There's hundreds of fillers on the market, but good old putty does the trick and you can paint over it immediately something you can't do with all it's modern derivatives. Once the the floor is filled put on the second coat, job done.

Cost 5Lt of paint, and a bit of elbow grease.

The black see through one piece rubber panel you can see in the window was £275, the windows go from floor to ceiling and the panel just fit nicely, fitted curtains would have cost a whole lot more.

An old pine kitchen table, cut down, makes up the coffee table. We topped it with re-enforce mirror. A pain to keep clean but well worth the effect. This is also, dare I say mirrored, by to two panels on each side of the fire place, which reflects the fire round the whole room when lit.

The beautiful thick rug, in the middle of the floor, with it's lovely ornate pattern must have come from a large old house. Because it's not cost effective to building houses so big now, you can pick these up at auctions for next to nothing.

All the chairs and the couches you see are second hand. The dark wood chairs are part of a 7 piece chase-lough, which is in different rooms all over the house. We re-upholstered the chairs (500.00); and beleave it or not we picked up the chase-lough (completely wrecked) for £100. The couches; I think they where around £150.00 each; their solid old (1940's ) style that will last for years; they've been reupholstered 4 or 5 times, but this time we went for fitted covers (£600.00).

The first picture of lamps in a corner, are an old fashion standard lamp painted white; we even painted the lamp shade.
We bought the one attached to the wall from Habitats closing down sale. The wall lamp was on the floor broke in half at it's two thinnest points. It's made up of a rectangle piece of chip board with the shape of a standard lamp cut out of it; covered in calico, with two lights attached to the back. I just re-enforced the the back and it was like new, £75.

The last picture is a collection of lamps; only the black one was paid for, it's sitting on what was a dark wood table the type you sit a plant on. Yes your right we painted it white; you stood still that day you could have finished the day looking quite pale. The rest are drawings and the one that's lit up on the wall is given a standard lamp appearance with a piece of plastic pipe and a wall light.

So start going to local auctions, church halls are the best and don't forget your magazines.
Being bold and thinking outside of the box doesn't have to cost a lot of money.

Please add your suggestions would love to include them.

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