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Getting Out From Underneath A Bed & Breakfast Business

Jan 8, 2008
You may have decided for one reason or another to sell your bed & breakfast business. For some individuals it wasn't what they thought it was going to be. As a result they spent too much of their time trying to make it work for them. Others just didn't turn a profit and have decided to throw in the towel. The last category involves those that are ready to retire from a business they really loved.

There are people out there interested in operating a bed & breakfast so what you are selling could be that opportunity they have been waiting for. It is much easier to buy an establishment that is already in place than to have to create one. Try to eliminate as many problems as you can so that they can buy the business and not have to invest in it right away.

A good real estate agent can help you to promote the positive things about your business. You really don't want to try to sell it on your own. This is a common mistake that can lead to nothing but your time and efforts being wasted. Most people are more comfortable buying any type of business through a real estate agency than from a private individual. The amount of paperwork is ridiculous and if you don't have experience with it you may make mistakes.

Be open to questions that are going to come up about the business. You can't blame interested parties for wanting to know why you are selling the business. They definitely don't want to end up in a difficult situation. Even if you are selling due to poor business you need to make sure they realize your role in that. This can be a humbling experience but it can also help your business to sale.

The more information you can share about your bed & breakfast business the better off you will be. The unknown aspects of it are what will drive people away. Be willing to show your logs of for reservations as well as your tax returns if they question income potential. This type of purchase is very different than simply buying a home so look at it from the perspective of the buyer.

Have the property inspected and appraised while you are in the early works with the real estate agent. If you find it won't be worth what you need to cover the loans on it then you are going to have to look at something else besides selling it. You may be able to get more if the contents of the bed & breakfast are staying in there as well. The asking price needs to be very reasonable if you are serious about getting yourself out from underneath it.

If your asking price is too much you will find your business does nothing but sit on the market. Too many owners of this type of business refuse decent offers and hold out for more. All that happens though is that it continues to be on the market without any serious commitment from a buyer. Make sure you know what it will appraise for before you set the asking price.

If you are set on your asking price you are going to have to work even harder to promote the business to others. You don't want it to sit on the market just because you are being stubborn on the price. You may be in a difficult financial situation where you can't afford to reduce it though and that is something you will have to discuss with your real estate agent.
About the Author
Patti Rob writes about the ups and downs of starting and running a B&B. You can avoid the common rookie mistakes and take the B&B Owners Quiz at BedandBreakfastProfits.com
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