5 Things That Can Add Value to Your Bed and Breakfast

bed and breakfastA bed and breakfast proves to be one of the most exciting businesses that appeal to both young and old entrepreneurs. Aside from it requiring smaller investments than hotels, it provides you more flexibility as a business owner. However, with the increasing number of B&Bs opening, you need to think of value-adding ways to be a top choice for guests.

Offer some care package

When it comes to B&Bs, it’s really the little things that count. For a warm welcome, offer some care package to your guests. It could be refreshments, an assortment of soaps or massage oils, or simple merchandise with hand-written notes. It doesn’t have to be grand; just be thoughtful.

But one great addition is a walk-in tub that will benefit travelling seniors and individuals with mobility problems alike. Heavenly Walk In Tubs says this kind of bathtub will make it easier for the elderly and handicapped to freshen up and at the same time, relax in a good soak.

Dress it up for the holidays

Observe holidays and different occasions and decorate your place for some fun and excitement. You can even have a mini program for your guests or a themed breakfast or dinner party. Just don’t overdo it on Halloween!

Offer tours and services

Connect with local providers and suppliers so you can attend to the different needs of your guests. Services may include airport transfers and city tour. You can also ask shops to consign in your B&B, so guests don’t have to go out for some pastries or coffee.

Have a lovely bridal suite

Generate more revenues by styling one of your rooms for brides-to-be. Make it look sophisticated and picture-perfect. Make it dramatic with a canopy. This would definitely be a hit.

Keep experimenting

Guests will keep coming back if they know they are always in for a surprise. Restyle and personalize the rooms to make your guests’ stay more memorable.

Running a bed and breakfast doesn’t stop in launching it and making sure it is kept clean and well maintained. You need to be more creative for it to be a profitable business.

Have a Restful Slumber with These Sleep Hygiene Tips

Woman sleeping peacefullySleep hygiene, according to studies, can help anyone get the sleep they deserve or at least maximize the hours of their slumber. It all comes down to following healthy habits (or good sleep hygiene practices) before going to bed. One good strategy is training your body to go to sleep and wake up the same time every day, even on weekends.

2brothersmattress.com and other mattress stores in Salt Lake City share other strategies that can offer a long-term solution to sleep difficulties:

Avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol.

Skip caffeinated drinks (coffee, tea, and soft drinks) as well as cigarette a few hours (between four and six hours) before bedtime. Both can interfere with your ability to fall asleep. Alcohol, meanwhile, can compromise your sleep quality.

Sleep only when tired or sleepy.

It is best to try to sleep only when you are actually sleepy or exhausted. This is better than spending too much lying awake in bed and trying so hard to fall asleep.

Use the bed for sleeping.

Avoid using your bed for anything apart from sleeping and sex. Don’t use it for working, eating, and other things. You should also consider replacing your mattress if it doesn’t offer enough support for your body.

Establish a soothing routine.

Relaxing activities before bed can help ease the transition to sleeping time. These include taking a hot bath, reading a book, and doing some relaxation exercises. Be sure to avoid mentally-draining and stressful activities.

Don’t watch the clock.

Frequent checking of the clock during the night can only stress you and make it hard for you to fall asleep. It also reinforces bad thoughts, as you’ll recognize how late it is and how much time you have left for sleeping.

Exercise regularly.

This can help you sleep faster, as well as improve the quality of your slumber. Morning is the best time to exercise, but if you don’t have time early in the day, be sure that you finish your workout three to four hours before bedtime.

Eat right.

If having an empty stomach before bedtime is distracting for you, it is a good idea to have a light snack. Be sure to avoid heavy meals before sleep, as they can interfere with your sleep.

Apart from these habits, you should make your bedroom comfortable for sleeping. It should be dark, quiet, and cool enough. Don’t hesitate to replace your mattress and pillows, especially if you’ve been using them for a long time or if you usually wake up with body aches.

Things To Consider When Negotiating With General Contractors

Contractor working on site with crane on the background

Contractor working on site with crane on the background

Everyone loves to enjoy a good deal. And while there is always a price tag to quality work and factors that affect construction budgeting, if you can play your cards right, you can get a fair price estimate from general contractors for your next construction project in Maine.

Well, beginning with the following three tips will be a good place to start before you meet up with your general contractor here in Maine to quote how much you are willing to spend on that project.

Draft a Budget

Before meeting a potential contractor, write down a budget, which will act as your frame of reference. A detailed budget will indicate limits on how much every part of the project will cost, and the areas you need to prioritize. You can then negotiate the costs within these set limits.

Get the Details Right

It is helpful to have a project list with you as you go to your contractor to get an estimate. Write down the materials you need to avoid paying for things you do not require. Should the contractor think that the project might need extra items, s/he will mention it so you can add that to your present project list.

Get Different Estimates

It is always advisable you get quotes from different licensed contractors before deciding on which one to hire. Some contractors tend to overcharge their clients, and you surely do not want this. Do not be deceived though; cheap does not mean quality.

So, if the price estimate is not reasonable, it certainly is not a good deal. Also, comparing several estimates is a good way to get an idea of how much it will cost complete the project.

Lastly, look into the different payment options and methods the general contractors you have shortlisted offer in Maine to determine the one that you will be comfortable servicing. Also, ensure the one you choose is a licensed contractor; you cannot take chances when it comes to your hard-earned cash.

Doggo Party: 3 Ways to Make Fido’s Birthday a Blast

Puppy Birthday You know you’d do just about anything for your furry babies, even to set up a grand birthday party.

Don’t worry, wanting to throw a birthday bash for your pup doesn’t make you a crazy dog person. As a matter of fact, a National Pet Owner survey involving 1,019 pet owners, revealed that 50% of the respondents go to great lengths to celebrate their pet’s special day.

Many people treat their dogs the way they’d treat their children, and when it comes to your kids, you only want the best. Here are four ways you can make your furry baby’s party a blast:

Mini Pup Cakes

What’s a birthday without a cake? Whip a healthy pup cake for your “baby” and its furry guests using dog-friendly recipes you can find online. You can get creative with the cake, say, by tying together some dog treats with an edible rope. If you happen to enjoy baking, it’s also a good idea to make some mini cakes for human guests and prepare them in fun party cupcake wrappers that match the overall theme.

Snoopy Says

If you remember playing Simon Says as a kid, this doggy adaptation of the game follows the same rules. You can make the tasks more challenging until you have a winner. Snoopy Says doesn’t only make a fun party game for both pup and “parent,” but it’s also a good way to train Fido.

Puppy Photo Booth

The last photo you took with your phone’s cam is probably that of your furry baby, so why not set up a photo booth to let your guests capture precious moments with their pups? Setting a photo booth also gives you the perfect excuse to dress up your pooch in cute costumes. You may include photo frames as party favors so your guests can easily put up their photos on display.

A pooch birthday party can get loads of fun for both the dogs and owners, but to keep the ball rolling, anticipate that disagreements between pups can and do happen. By making sure to keep an eye on the dogs’ behavior around food and toys, your dog is likely to have a safe and fun “barkday” party.

4 Clever Tricks to Create Wealth in the Real Estate Industry

A couple trying to get into real estate investment If you have been looking for an investment that will make your money grow fast, the real estate industry offers some of the best opportunities. As a new investor, however, you need to navigate carefully to get the highest return on your investment.

Use these smart tips to create wealth in this industry:

Property Flipping

Flipping is one of the most lucrative ways to make money in real estate. Investors prefer it because it is fast. You simply buy a property, renovate it, and sell it. The entire process typically takes six months. Once you are ready to sell the property, look for a suitable client. Find companies that buy houses for cash so that you have your money as soon as possible to invest in other projects.

Rental Income

With rents rising faster with every passing year, investing in real estate is becoming a sure way of making more passive income for landlords. Of course, you will need to choose an excellent location to enjoy higher profits. Buying and renting out real estate guarantees you long term income and helps you hold onto your investment for long, increasing its wealth potential.

Appreciation of Property

Historically, property has always appreciated. By buying real estate and waiting for it to appreciate, you are assured of making money without doing much on the property. Moreover, appreciation of property is good news if you’re considering refinancing.

Cashing in on Raw Land

Once you buy raw land, you can let companies use it and earn royalties depending on your rights to the property. The companies pay you more for any discoveries they make on your land or any other properties they set up on it.

An investment in the real estate industry will exponentially grow your money if you do it smartly. With so many different options available, take your time to decide what works for you.

Digital Eye: Technology Compromises Your Sleep

How Gadgets Affect Your SleepElectronic gadgets are hard to put down even if it’s late at night or time to sleep. It may be because you’re watching a movie, surfing the web, playing a game, or reading an eBook. While using your gadget may not seem a like a big problem, it can negatively affect your sleep. In fact, it may be the reason you find it hard to fall asleep at night.

Difficulty in Dozing Off

Digital devices emit blue light that can suppress the production of melatonin, the hormone that regulates your sleep/wake cycle. Reduced melatonin will make it difficult to doze off and stay asleep. It is always better to give yourself a minimum of 30 minutes of gadget-free time before lying in the bed. It is also a good idea to keep gadgets outside the room or use blackout roller blinds for total darkness.

The More Alert Brain

Technology before bedtime fools your brain into thinking that you need to stay awake. As gadgets keep your brain alert, it is likely that you’ll find it hard to relax and settle into sleep. This is why unwinding using your phone to watch a movie or read a novel isn’t the best move. Do other relaxing activities like drinking a warm glass of milk or reading a real book.

Disrupted Sleep

Even if you’re not using a gadget before dozing off, it can still harm your sleep. This is true if you keep your phone near your bed. Chimes from the text, calls and other reminders can disrupt your rest. This eventually results in getting less sleep, with a negative effect on the quality of slumber. This is why it makes sense to limit gadgets’ use in the bedroom or keep it in silent mode.

Don’t let technology affect the quality of your sleep. An expert from Yesblinds.com.au recommends making your bedroom ideal for sleep by keeping it dark. Use blackout blinds or an eye mask to maintain total darkness. You might also want to experiment with finding the right temperature for a comfortable slumber.

How Does Furniture Fade?

Factors that Cause Furniture to FadeAre you wondering why some pieces of furniture or artwork in your house no longer have the same colour they had when you bought them? Fading is a change in hue over time caused by different factors, but one of which is overexposure to light and ultraviolet rays. Knowing what the causes are enables you to implement preventative measures to minimise damage.

Ultraviolet Rays (UV)

Studies have shown that UV rays are the single biggest factor that causes fabrics, carpets, furniture and other furnishings to fade. The technical term for the process of fading is photodegradation. Chromophores are light-absorbing colour bodies in dyes; the hues a person sees rely on chemical bonds and the light absorbed in a certain wavelength.

When ultraviolet rays strike furnishings they have the ability to break the chemical bonds down, resulting in the fading of colours and surfaces. Overexposure to this part of sunlight speeds up the photodegradation process. Installing ready made roller blinds on windows enable you to control the amount of light that enters your home, protecting it from harmful UV rays, an expert from Yesblinds.com.au advised.

Heat

Other than the UV rays, you must also worry about the heat the sun generates when it comes to preventing furniture to fade. Keep furniture, artwork, curtains and other furnishings at room temperature to reduce the possibility of these items fading quickly.

Other Factors to Consider

UV rays and heat aren’t the only factors that may cause fading; others may include pollutants, humidity, interior lighting, and the quality and dyes of the furniture. The installation of blinds and window films keep furnishings safe from harmful rays that may fade colour.

Keep your furniture in good condition by cleaning them, re-painting them and adding an extra layer of varnish. You need to do all you can to slow down or prevent the fading process.

You Want to Own a 25-Room Motel? Here’s What You Can Expect

A 25-Room Motel in QueenslandInvesting in a 25-room motel can be an excellent decision. It may give you a source of steady income; the money will come and go just as the people in the motel come and go. The management of a motel is less complex, too. Before considering the management rights for sale, though, Resort Brokers Australia says you must arm yourself with the right information. 

If you like to buy a 25-room motel for sale, why not find out more about it?

Management & Initial Processing are Less Complex

As mentioned, managing a motel is less complex. A body corporate does not need to grant approval for contractual agreements; a motel owner and a tenant can engage in the business as each party sees fit. With regard to decisions about the property, the motel owner only needs to deal with a single party.

A licensing requirement for a motel’s operations is also unnecessary. A motel owner can start running the business soon. He does not need to play by the rules of a training course. This is beneficial, especially for an experienced property owner.

No On-Site Living Requirement

Provided it is a management-run motel, the motel owner does not have to live on-site. This gives you the chance to build an external residential unit. You can also hire someone to watch the business for you.

Great Source of Stable Income

The high earning potential is a factor that makes the investment in a 25-room motel for sale deserve a thumbs up. Once the motel is up and running, the money (all of it) goes to you. The division of income, as well as end of the month accounting, is unheard of.

Best of all, your income stream is stable. If the people who are renting in the motel choose to take units out the letting pool, your income stream can remain the same. The money will keep coming; just be smart with regard to the costs for maintenance.

Easy Reselling Opportunity

As the other reasons can support, a motel’s entire operations are simple. They are easy to discuss to a potential buyer. If it boils down to giving up the motel, the assurance that a motel is easy to re-sell is yours.

These are only a few of the benefits of investing in a motel. Simply put, it is a worthy and profitable investment.

Constructing a Swimming Pool That’s Safe for Your Children

Swimming Pool Safe for KidsSwimming is a wonderful sport that your children can enjoy and benefit from. However, your children's safety should always be considered if you intend to put a pool in your backyard.

Modern technology has created products and options that make swimming pools safer and more secure for kids.

Fibreglass Pools – There are three popular types of modern swimming pools, based on materials used. There's concrete, vinyl and fibreglass. Fibreglass happens to be the newest and most advanced among the three. Guardian Pools adds that these come in eye-catching designs on top of their superior quality. Since they have the smoothest finish, and require the least maintenance and the lowest chemical usage, they can be deemed the most kid-friendly. Even the short installation time can be a safer option when you have energetic and curious children.

Safety Glass Fence – You may not be required to sit poolside the whole time your children are enjoying the pool, but you should see them clearly from afar. Glass fences give you a perfect view even at a distance. Also, modern pool fences are made to be durable and virtually unbreakable, which makes them perfect for playful and overactive kids.

Flotation Devices – Keep flotation devices such as inner tubes, arm bands and life vests handy to encourage children to use them. Purchase durable and age-appropriate flotation devices, then install storage space for these ‘toys’ near the pool.

Teach your children how to put them on, or use them before they enter the water. However, don't put all your confidence in these safety devices. Teach your children basic pool safety guidelines and make sure there’s an adult present when they are enjoying the pool.

Your children aren't the only ones who can enjoy a backyard pool. Your family and friends would also appreciate the hours of fun and swimming, as long as your pool is deemed safe.

Financing Your Motel Purchase

Motel Purchase in QueenslandYou have made all your plans and scouted properties and found a few that you like and now it’s time to talk money. The sun is shining brightly and you can visualise yourself in your new business. But then, storm clouds suddenly appear when you realise that you need money to finance this grand dream. In other words, you’re in a situation where you want to borrow money to finance the purchase of the motel that you’d like to own and run.

Loan to Value

The first thing you need to know is that the amount of money you want to borrow will vary from lender to lender on the same property. A lot also depends on the way you present your case to the lender. A Loan to Value (LVR) only provides an indication of what you can raise on your prospective property.

The LVR for properties in Queensland are as follows:

  • Freehold going concerns will get up to 70% of the valuation
  • Freehold investments will also get up to 70% of the valuation, and
  • Leaseholds will get up to 50% of the valuation.

Required Documents

The valuation is usually done by an independent agency and a motel for sale broker can assist you with information about how much you can borrow and who (i.e., financial institutions) will lend it to you. Remember that to get the approval, you will need to provide the financial institution with a number of documents. This includes your personal history with running businesses, the valuation of the property you intend to buy, a comprehensive business plan and budgeted cash flow, financial statements for the preceding 3 years from the motel, income tax statements of the purchasers/guarantors and a statement of the assets and liabilities of the purchasers/guarantors.

It is best to always work with a motel and accommodations broker, even if it will cost you. The broker will know more than you do.