Why I don't provide breakfast anymore

1.95% bread will be wasted because no one eat it. 2. Milk either wasted or expired if I don’t check frequent enough or drink too fast so I will get a call ask me being more milk . You serious ?
3. I provided full cream milk, guests will ask skim milk, theb I provide skim milk as second option, then guests asked for soy milk. I also had someone asked for almond milk. Another guests asked for orange juice because she can’t drink milk. Oh someone asked for yogurt once…

So I give up. No more breakfast for everyone. Too hard to please.


Wow, sorry you had such a crazy experience. Sounds like you made a good choice for your situation.

We’ve had a very positive result. We must have been lucky so far. But, our guests are in-home with us so we eat what they don’t.

The funny thing to me is no one ever (or very often) eats fruit. Fresh fruit is pushed so hard as a good choice but people don’t make it. We have a beautiful crystal plate and we arrange fruit on it every morning. My kids eat fruit and vegetables all the time so it always surprises me - eventually, I’ll give it up, but it looks so pretty…


@dcmooney Is your separate entrance finished yet? Any booking for the Trump coronation?


@Crystalscholar – you’ve made a decision that works for you I prepare full breakfasts, and ask ahead which items from my Breakfast For Two menu they want at least for the first couple days. That way I can shop ahead and have my pantry filled what what they want.

Same thing could be done with any breakfast offerings:
"We offer simple breakfast items – oatmeal and grits packets, and corn flakes. What kind of milk and bread or bagels or English muffins do you prefer? Please let me know ASAP so I can have things on hand for you.

Then you buy half-loaves (most bakeries will do this) and small quantities of liquid

They eat fruit at our house all the time. It all depends on who each guest is, I guess.

that’s funny!! Doesn’t make a lot of sense. I mean, they will eat a few grapes, or a banana, but only that when there are up to 5 people. Often the arrangement is left untouched. This is our experience with about 120 groups.

We usually cut up fruit for the breakfast table, and it’s gobbled up. Pineapple and mango, particularly. Sometimes we’ll have small bunches of grapes, and other times, we’ll put out whole bananas and clementines.

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Yes, the construction is done,and it is beautiful. Our guests have raved over it. The color of the hallway wasn’t what I had pictured, at all, but many guests say it’s so calm and peaceful, so, while it’s not my preference, it works. The new bedroom colors - brown walls with black furniture, and a black-brown-white duvet cover, looks great. We are so happy with it. My builder did more than we asked and charged less than we feared.

It’s not a separate entrance, but there is now a solid, locking door, separating our spaces. It is completely fabulous for our family. We can go downstairs into our office/playroom/storage part of the home, where our extra refrigerator is, with complete ease, not feeling so awkward about walking into (really just past) the guests space. It does feel odd as we were so much more closely associated with the guests before; it feels different. We miss that bit, but, it’s still way better.

Sadly - UGH - the coronation - what a disaster. Not a nibble for some time. Hotel prices are falling everywhere, and the average cost of an airbnb listing, but hosts still seem to not be paying attention to the market. Just as on the following Wednesday morning when the hotels were all over $1,000 and many listings were sleepily at regular January prices, now the market is flooded with new listings for this one event and they are still high-priced. There are only 243 listings (including non IB) with 2 bedrooms under $1,000, only NINETEEN under $400, including mine (this is inside-the-beltway, 4 guests). I’m at $390 with a minimum of 3 nights. While you can still pay $1,000 a night for some hotel rooms in town, there are many hotel rooms available right in town for $450-600. Yet the huge majority of airbnb listings are over $700.

My neighbor, with much less space than mine, only 1 bedroom, just opened up those nights about 2 weeks ago, and her husband wanted the price to be over $1,000. I told her what my research was showing but he still has that price. Who will pay over a $1,000 for a tiny 1 bedroom basement apartment in the suburbs? I will be happy if they get it, but they don’t seem to be researching on their own, and they aren’t even listening to what someone is telling them.

It appears that I just missed my chance. I did have the dates open all along but my price must have always been to high for the market, though I have been watching prices from the beginning. I started at over $1,000 and have been lowering lowering lowering.

I am now torn between lowering it again just to get it booked and feeling like why should I be in the bottom of the pile price wise, when I have been given such high ratings? We hoped that family would be sitting around at Christmas and say “hey, why don’t we go? Let’s check on airbnb…tap tap tap tap Hey! Look at this nice place, 2 bedrooms, and they serve breakfast! Book it!”. But no such luck.

Thanks so much for asking, and thanks for ‘listening’. I’ve been trying to explain to family or friends the stress and disappointment but just get blank looks in return. Well, meanwhile I had a lovely group of 3 people from Singapore who just left me the nicest review ever. Two more reviews and I reach 100 - feels like a nice milestone to me. Also, the family with the screaming 2 yo that I reviewed honestly never responded at all. While I find certain aspects of hosting pretty stressful I really do enjoy it. I need to focus on those positives and just move on.

And that posting that a lot of this was discussed on, which then was branched off for the lively political discussion, has disappeared. I don’t know how to find it; do you?


I like offering breakfast.

What a treat it is for guests to sit in their own suite, still in their jammies [or whatever it is they wear], sipping on their morning coffee that they made to the strength that they enjoy or a favorite tea, eating the breakfast that they requested, that has been placed there the night before. While they enjoy their breakfast, their companions could be taking a shower, fixing their hair, or still sleeping. I ask to know what kind of dairy add-in they would like for their beverage, and with a few exceptions, I know long before they arrive what should be in their fridge. Though I only offer whole milk and 1/2&1/2, there have been requests for skim and non-dairy milk. So, I get a small container of skim, size depends on the length of their stay, or make some almond milk.

I don’t offer an extensive menu but they can pick two from the list. Many guests enjoy some fruit, but I only buy fruit that we enjoy. My husband loves it when there are “too many” bananas since he knows that I will make him some banana bread, an offering I don’t make to guests. I think about 85% of our guests eat a piece of fruit with their breakfast, though they might slip it in their bags to enjoy during their day.

I am quite sure that if I didn’t offer breakfast, many guests would want to use our kitchen in the morning. Making all those breads, etc is work, but far less annoying than tripping over guests in my kitchen!


Here it is, just search for “inaugeration” making sure you mis-spell it the same way every time. :wink: (sorry, I didn’t say anything previously but now you need to know.)

I think you need to be reminded of this:

and this:

Your disappointment is related to expectations. Last summer you thought doubling your rates was reasonable. Everyone advocated trying to hit the jackpot and there was nothing wrong with that. But now you are frustrated by not being able to get over 300% more than you would normally get in high season? So a gentle suggestion… maybe what needs adjustment is not price but attitude. And I say that with a great deal of good will, not condescension.


Yes, you are totally right, and yes, I do spell it wrong every time!

Yes, this expectation that I’d make so much - which, looking at hotel and other listing’s prices seemed reasonable - now, if I get “only”, say, $200 a night I’m going to feel cheated. It’s all very stressful.

It turns out that, perhaps, Wheelhouse and Beyondpricing were right in their estimates of 2x the normal price, but with all the other listings charging so much more, I thought I should, too. The pricing thing frustrates me constantly. I had hoped that using Beyond last fall would settle it for me, but their model didn’t fit my situation, and, I think, ended up costing me money.

Maybe what I need to do it put it as my seasonal price of $115 (for 4) and ‘let it go’.

Thanks for the “shoulder”

Inauguration. Inauguration. Inauguration. Inauguration. I’ll never forget it now! :wink:


I think $115 is too low but I do think you should try not to worry.

Does you listing title say anything about the inauguration? If it doesn’t I’d alter the title.

We don’t have a lot of special events here but EDM is popular here and there are a couple of small festivals with big name artists. Deadmau5 is going to be here New Year’s Eve so I raised my price to $69/$79 for two. I wasn’t too surprised I didn’t have a booking because I know a lot of young people do this sort of thing last minute. Still, NYE was fast approaching so yesterday I put something like “New Year’s Eve master suite @ 1-10” as my title. Then I put in the “brief description” that the special was a late check out (3 pm). I also mentioned the Deadmau5 show. I blocked off New Year’s Day to permit the late check out. Last night I got booked by a couple who is traveling back to CA from being in Big Bend National Park. They didn’t mention the show or the late check out so I don’t know if that was a selling point or not. I’ll ask after I meet them. Was it changing the title and description and moving up in search? Every time I’ve made a special title for the event I got booked. Maybe it’s just coincidence.

After they check out on Jan 1st I’ll make the room available and see if I get a last minute same day booking.

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Thanks! I changed it to “Inauguration Hideaway; 2 Bedroom Suite in our Home!”.

In description I said “Celebrators or Marchers Welcome! Get away from the craziness at the end of the day and enjoy this restful 2 bedroom suite with friendly hosts on site”.

We’ll give it a go! Thanks again, @KKC


@dcmooney that was my concern all along with your listing. I had a theory (but for once bit my tongue and didn’t push too hard) that it would have been a good idea to lower your prices at the time I suggested. The reason is because at that time prices were so much higher your price would have stood out as fantastic value. The problem with lowering your price as everyone else does it that you’re still in the pack competition wise so you still aren’t standing out as much. I really do have my fingers crossed for you and I’ve always hoped I was wrong on the pricing strategy.

It’s weird I talked about it theoretically with the guy I’m seeing who is a consultant for a big bank; he initially agreed with most (keep your price high and lower if no-one bites) but I immediately explained my view that it was problematic in a saturated market. Because when you decide it’s time to lower the price so is everyone else…and so all that happens is the bar is lowered but you don’t gain a competitive edge on pricing.

I suspect the only way out of it now is to aggressively cut so you’re still making a good profit but are significantly cheaper than others. Or you can wait more.

I don’t have the answers but it’s been, from a theoretical point of view very interesting. I’m disappointed for you though …

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Thanks for the kind thoughts. I wish I could say “well, I’ll know better next time” but I doubt I’ll be in this business in another four years. Ah, well, life goes on. I think I’m finally over it, thanks to @KKC’s and your support. I think I finally got rid of the emotional baggage.

When we initially booked it we had had the dates blocked. We unblocked them and put in a ‘bookmark price’ which seemed high to us, and it was booked within seconds. and we realized we’d let it go way to cheap. Which we were happy to honor, of course. But I think you were saying, @Zandra, in another post - that people will say that if you book up quickly the price is to low - you were arguing that it might mean the price is just right, and I see your point.

The place where I get really, really stuck is this - when I travel with my family of 5, I don’t see anything like what I offer for anywhere near my price. We stayed in a place near the mountains of Virginia last September - were you on the board then? That was filthy. GOBS of cobwebs everywhere, filthy windows, doors just gross, hair and mold in the shower…cheap bedding with no mattress pads. Dang, my family has invested so much time and money to provide such a nice comfortable place for ‘everyone else’ but we are not getting it for ourselves. I think that’s where the big struggle comes in for me. I need to find away around that.

OK, I’m getting a bit to personal - but that’s the best part of hosting, right? Seeing what it shows us about ourselves, as well as the world. (Dang, they should use that in their advertising!)

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Oh @dcmooney I get it. Travelling for 6 months and all I booked was superhosts and places rated 4.5 stars and above. And boy was I shocked with what I found…

I know you’re offering something exceptional and so do you. I don’t know if people coming for the inauguration are driven by quality though… they I expect will be very driven by price. They’re not here for a relaxing break, a romantic weekend or quality time with the family. So on this occasion you’re looking at a unique situation where people are going to be choosing your place for a slightly different reason than they usually would.

Don’t get down over the inauguration …there’s still time to make a little extra money by maybe going down to twice or 2.5 times your rate now, while everyone else is still slowly shaving a bit off their prices.

Ps if it makes you feel any better I don’t think many booked at the sky high rates everyone had up … so they’ve all lost out too :slight_smile:

I hope you’re still in this business in 4 years time; it’s extra money that will always be handy in an environment where you need to think about kids educations and provision for your old age.(yes I’m obsessed with my pension provision! )


Those are all cheap items. I’m not sure why you’re so upset! Milk and bread costs nothing to provide … I buy semi milk and decant it into a jug. Guess what everyone uses it and no/one complains it’s the wrong type. And on the rare occasions someone wants something else (almond milk or soy ) I buy it! That stuff is cheap enough not to have a hernia over it. I mean they’re not asking for sausages, bacon or smoked salmon !


Here’s the breakfast table this morning! Nothing expensive on the table but it’s enough for people to feel happy.


I agree. Will consider printing and putting this up on my wall, as a constant reminder.

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