Lee Rotbart

Another weekend lost to numbers

In Second time lucky on September 21, 2010 at 11:16 am

It’s Tuesday… and I’m bored to tears of looking at our ‘revised for the 99th time’ business proposal. We’ve analysed every word, we’ve re-worked every sentence, we’ve tried to inject our personality into each paragraph and sentiment, and we’ve met (as far as we know) key lending criteria. We also sacrificed another Saturday night to the Business Plan gods.

With a massive sigh we sent it off on Sunday to our long-suffering broker.

Now the high of discovering another property has left me, I am  finding it hard to accept people’s congratulations with an excited smile because in my heart of hearts I know that the mortgage is the sticking point; and if the last few weeks have proved anything it’s that mortgages, not properties, are the hard things to come by.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not down or depressed about the whole thing, just a little more laid back, and a little more cynical, and while I am certain that we will eventually get there, I’m just not 100% convinced that this will be the property we do it on, or that we will be down there by Christmas – as was originally intended.

I’ve learned that plans don’t always go the way we expect, but that’s no bad thing because I have utter faith that it will all work out in the end. A cash rich industry, guest houses do not lend themselves to robust business planning; being owned by people who consider them hobbies doesn’t help either; and that’s just something we have to accept.

Amusingly most of the owners we’ve spoken to have said the same thing, “Just tell the banks that we are retiring / running it as a hobby / only open 2 out of 5 rooms / close during peak times and they’ll understand”… hmmm, no they don’t! I hate to break it to all of you but that kind of reasoning just ain’t cutting it when we’re asking to borrow over £250k.

The stumbling block of the moment is that we found out that fixtures, fittings and furniture are not included in the price so we are waiting to find out the ‘good will’ cost of the business; based on the last 3 years’ accounts this should be minimal however there’s no point speculating, and I guess we’ll just deal with this obstacle when it turns up (which was supposed to be yesterday).

On the ‘going forward’ side Danny has sold his flat so will be moving in with me early November; based on the size of my flat it will, if nothing else, inject a sense of urgency into proceedings.

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