BETHNAL & BEC – A column for owners, by owners

Bethnal and Bec Luxury Staycations
Bethnal & Bec Luxury Staycations

VICKY – Setting out our plans for 2023

We have now spent 6 months as full time cleaners in our business and this is the year we start to look for local, dependent and good people that can support us in our cleaning and operations. Since Chris and I took back all the cleans in July 2022 we’ve not had 1 complaint, so handing the reins back to cleaners we are going to do slowly, and be completely sure the next ones are right for us!

If you’ve read my previous columns – you’ll know that for a few years now we have grappled with various ‘professional’ cleaning firms that have competed 2 out of every 3 cleans for us – but hardly ever without incident, illness, tardiness or general apathy towards us, our business and the task in hand. After two of the biggest (and justified) complaints from guests in July we took back the reins and the standards went back to what a guest should rightly expect when paying £200+ a night….. but then where do you go from there? Chris and I became every business expert’s worst example of how you shouldn’t work ‘in’ your business but ‘on’ your business…. The ‘on’ bit suffered Big Time! After 40+ hours a week of cleaning, essential admin, guest liaison and then being parents to 4 kids, we were left tired, uninspired and unmotivated. So, we sat down in early January and plotted our return to normality!

Hence we’ve decided we will try to work with 3 or 4 independent cleaners who will help to clean, and help facilitate guest services we offer. Working a few days a month each – we’re hoping to be able to get them to our very high standards of cleaning – but without them having to rush off to another job, or be late from the previous clean. That if they are unwell we have a few other people we can (hopefully) get help from – plus keeping our cleaning costs a little bit lower (at one point we were being quoted £30/hour by contract cleaning companies).

Thats the theory anyway!

Chris – 2023

2023 is the date we will open our first family friendly accommodation on the Suffolk Coast. Just don’t ask us when exactly in 2023.

But next week we have a structural engineer booked in to see how our roof can support the solar panels and to give us calculations for when we take away some load bearing walls…yikes.

Of course we’ve done this 3 times before, actually 4 times if you count our own house too. But this is the first time we are trying to manage such a build remotely, nearly 2 hours away; which is going to unearth a whole raft of challenges I’m sure. To help mitigate some of these issues we are parachuting in our regular trusted handymen who were absolute godsends when during the opening of our last accommodation in 2021 our contracted builders basically “gave-up” with a few weeks to go until our first guests were booked in. Dave & Dean we know will not let us down, we trust them implicitly, and after our previous tribulations with contractors this is THE most important thing for us…TRUST.

So fingers crossed, and wish us luck with this build; it can’t get any worse than supply shortages, COVID and even bloody petrol queues in 2021 (remember them)…….can it?

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About Dominic Johnson 396 Articles
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