The Joys and Challenges of Innkeeping

It’s been a busy start to 2014 for the team here at Inn Partners. We’ve been on the road in the last month educating prospective innkeepers on the joys and challenges of innkeeping through our Innkeeping Seminars. Heide, Bill & I were in Durham, NC at the beautiful Arrowhead Inn on March 1st with over 18 prospective innkeepers in attendance. We covered everything from financing a purchase, to operations of an inn, marketing, the personal side of innkeeping, creating your personal inn model and even how we value properties.

Tim Piper consults with future innkeepers in his hotel suite.On March 9-11, I was joined by our associate Rob Hart from Georgia and presented to over 35 prospective innkeepers at the Mid Atlantic Conference in King of Prussia, PA. The focus of my presentation was on valuations and the importance of record keeping. Rob spoke on the day-to-day rigors and personal side of an innkeeper’s life — a critical component of deciding to become an innkeeper.

While hosting seminars and traveling to conferences keeps us plenty busy, it’s what we love doing and keeps us connected with our favorite people in the industry. Inn Partners takes pride in providing a forum for learning and challenging prospective innkeepers to discover what drives them toward this career path. We love the excitement, trepidation, camaraderie, intense learning and laughter that are shared by all who attend. It’s a great way to test the waters and get an idea of how much goes into this lifestyle. It’s okay if you discover it isn’t for you. Either way, it’s a win-win for everyone who participates in this rewarding process.

For those that do want to move forward, the individual focus session the next day discusses personal finances, location, size and style of a property. Aspiring innkeepers can use this to create a model of the type of inn that is right for them. At that point the journey has begun.

Interested in attending one of our workshops? Next up, we’ll be heading to Manchester, Vermont on April 1 for another seminar in advance of the Vermont Travel Industry Conference on April 2-3. So what do you say, is it time for you to join us?

Tim Piper

2 thoughts on “The Joys and Challenges of Innkeeping

  1. Having retained Inn Consulting Partners for a valuation after attending a different “Aspiring Innkeepers” seminar, I learned (the hard way) that we would have been better served by taking the aspiring seminar with Inn Consulting Partners AND by retaining their expertise and experience in the actual B&B purchase. However, we made the decision to obtain valuation assistance ONLY, and sorely regret this decision. (The valuation was extremely beneficial and casual dinner conversation with Tim Piper gifted us with additional nuggets of practical information.

    Or, in other words, we were foolishly frugal at the wrong time. I hope some aspiring innkeeper benefits from my public expression of self-imposed unprofitable frugality. We regret not having Tim walk us through the entire acquisition, because increased costs and stress could have been avoided.

    Tim’s advice to “like” the inn but “don’t fall in love” is astute. We did not keep our options open but instead focused on one property–and own the financial impact of our FOOLISH failure to retain Tim for the entire B&B purchase experience. I hope admitting this mistake helps some other aspiring innkeeper.

    We hope to attend (or host) a future educational seminar by Inn Consulting Partners. We admire and respect their excellent and timely completed valuation services. Tim is an expert and in our opinion, worth every penny! (I haven’t talked to him in 10 months, so he has no idea I am posting this.)

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