New research has revealed nearly two thirds (63%) of UK B&Bs and guest houses have experienced business disruptions in 2018.
According to new data from insurance firm Direct Line for Business, the average cost to the business as a result of these disruptions was £3,985, of which £3,276 was spent fixing the problems with a further £709 written off through loss of revenue.
The most common type of disruption faced by UK B&Bs and guest houses is as a result of visitors damaging a room, an issue which has affected almost half of establishments surveyed. This is followed by water damage from burst pipes and broken or damaged boilers, both of which have affected a quarter of B&B owners.
The group said business disruption is costing B&B businesses significant revenues, along with the cost of repairs there is the loss of earnings as rooms can be out of use for a long time.
The most expensive issue to deal with for B&Bs is water damage from flooding which costs approximately £28,000 to fix. This includes the cost of resolving the problem (£22,700) and lost revenues (£5,339) while the premises is “out of action”.
A large proportion of B&B businesses affected by these issues had to shut their doors completely until the repairs were completed. As a result, nearly two fifths lost bookings, while a fifth suspected that they lost return business. One in seven received complaints from existing customers, while the same number received negative reviews online.
David Weston, chairman of the Bed & Breakfast Association, said: “B&B owners work tirelessly to provide an outstanding service to their guests, but unfortunately all it takes is flood damage or a leaking roof for them to have to close their doors to guests, significantly affecting them financially.
“It is important owners look at insurance cover to guard their business in the event of disruption and, ideally, they should choose a provider that will help them get back on track quickly to minimise disruption for guests.”