Starting a Business in Ohio or Anywhere
Starting a business is done for many reasons one of the main being not satisfied with your job, or you want something to keep you busy in retirement. What ever the reason you need to make sure it is the right reason, take it from me as I have been self employed since almost day one of my adult life and I have seen others make many mistakes.
In many instances the business of choice seems to be restaurants, honestly I do not no why and I am sure the people going into this business do not either. Everyone seems to think they are a chef and it would be fun to run a restaurant, well that fantasy will soon enough and many leave once they are in this business, of course there are many who like this business also in all fairness.
Restaurants are high volume, low profit businesses many time your profit margins are only 3% after everything is said and done and the hours will kill you. Also do you know that almost 90% of restaurants fail within the first five years of business, this figure may not be exact so do not quote me, though you can believe me their are easier ways to make a buck and if you are willing to work like that I would suggest pursuing another field. I started in the restaurant business over 30 years ago and about 7 years later moved on to something else. I also understand that for some people this maybe their forte, all I want to do is let you know is that it is definitely not a business opportunity for everyone.
Motel Business – A Family might love this business.
Motels – now this is what I have been doing pretty much my entire life so I understand this business but have seen many come into this business and loose their shirts. Why? Well the main reason is that everyone wants a Radison and that simply is not going to happen. The same business concept works with any business, start small and grow big what I am saying is you need to learn the business and retaining your customer base is essential in the success of your business. Maintain your existing customers while building new ones, you might ask, what am I saying? What I am saying is do not shut down your property to upgrade, upgrade your property over time letting your customers continue to visit and see the updates they in turn tell other customers.
Over the years I have seen many people come into this business and fail because the first thing they do is shut down the property for upgrades, WRONG! Then not long after they run out of money or re-open and have no business. The one thing you need to understand is with independent properties that you are either converting or just updating is once you close the doors people start traveling else where and your place is no longer on their trail. Thus you are starting from ground zero and are trying to entice customers to return, which they will eventually but more than likely you will not be there.
I might also note that from my standpoint this is a great way to build a close family as you will be around your family all of the time, just remember to get away from time to time on little vacations of course with the family. If is kind of funny but over the years more and more independent motels are owned by people from India and fewer and fewer people from this country go into the business but they see Bed and Breakfasts as glamorous businesses, to be quite honest I do not see the glamour.
One other thing I might mention is that you do not retire to the motel business as it is like farming, if you want to make any money you have to do pretty much everything yourself so if you do not enjoy physical work this might not be the business for you.
The Steps in Buying a Business:
- View several business types before making a decision, ie motel, restaurants, retail, etc.
- Make sure as a family you discuss what you are doing, outlining what will be expected from all members.
- Put together a business plan
- Check State laws on taxes and liens on property, if their are any what can you do not to inherit the problems in many cases all that is required is shutting down operations for 10 days completely which really give you time to see where you want to start.
- Sign a contract to purchase
- Obtain financing, banks, land contract, etc.
- Close the deal
- Move in or take over operations – Do not make hasty decisions, learn the business, understand the strengths and weaknesses of the business.
- Have a website built by professionals, today you do not need affiliations if you have a good website, be strong and independent.
Over the years I have tried many businesses and never have I failed at any but simply have decided what is right for me, I will continue to post my thoughts on the process though should you have direct questions you need answered fill free to e-mail me as I am always available for consulting on specifics.
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