"Artist Retreat" Income Idea

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Nette, Aug 12, 2004.

  1. Nette

    Nette Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    1,811
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Location:
    NC
    On another thread someone mentioned this idea as a means of generating income for the homestead. I recently renovated my grandmother's farmhouse, and have been toying with the idea of renting it out on week-ends to offset expenses. My husband operates a dairy at the same location as this farmhouse, so there is plenty of atmosphere/solitude/beauty. (So why don't we LIVE there? Good question. Maybe one day.) My sister commented that "it's just like a bed & breakfast!" Well, sort of. It also has a lot of personal items that I'd hate to see messed up. Has anyone on the board actually done this sort of thing? What are the risks/pitfalls?
     
  2. unregistered6474

    unregistered6474 Guest

    Messages:
    497
    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2003
    You might check out www.wetcanvas.com and ask this question - it's a message board for artists. I would think that it could have the potential to be successful! I paint occasionally and I like painting rural subjects, but since I live in a city of a couple million people rural subjects are tough to find. :( You would be targeting a niche market, but I think it would work!
     

  3. Cyngbaeld

    Cyngbaeld In Remembrance Supporter

    Messages:
    28,248
    Joined:
    May 20, 2004
    Location:
    SE Missouri
    I think if you did an artists retreat you should consider providing meals. I know when I am painting I get too involved to think about cooking, even tho I'm hungry. You might want to remove any items that are real expensive, rare or of great sentimental value, just for your own peace of mind.
     
  4. countrygrrrl

    countrygrrrl PITA

    Messages:
    1,265
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2003
    Location:
    Zone Unknown
    There's a very famous artists' retreat in New Hampshire called ... ??? McSomething (for being so famous, I'm sure having trouble remembering its name :haha: ).

    I knew someone who spent the summer there and, from what I remember, there were cabins for each artist and meals provided.

    I think the separate cabin deal is kind of the standard for these kinds of things.

    However, a bed and breakfast would work. Esp. if you're a great cook! :D
     
  5. RAC

    RAC Guest

    Usually, if you're doing a "retreat" you're talking about at least a week at a time. Just a weekend is not really long enough to get settled in and set up to paint. Also, an artist to lead it (if you yourself aren't one). Meals are provided, sometimes an "off-site" trip or two to other local picturesque sites to paint. Maybe one "free day" for local sightseeing.

    Most of the successful ones I've heard about are on the coast, or at least near large lakes. Things to think about are 1) how close are you to a major airport (unless you're only looking at locals as your target market) 2) other tourist attractions in the area (maybe DH goes out fishing while DW paints, for example) that way they get the double occupancy rate for the room without sharing with total strangers. 3)very important--how many bathrooms does the place have?

    Another option might be to hold knitters' retreats along the same lines, getting a teacher or two from a local yarn store or even some of the big names.

    Go to the library and check out ads in The Artist's Magazine, or check online--the ads will tell you what is standard for that sort of thing.
     
  6. countrygrrrl

    countrygrrrl PITA

    Messages:
    1,265
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2003
    Location:
    Zone Unknown
    ::lightbulb::

    It's MacDowell. Here's their website:
    http://www.macdowellcolony.org/history.html

    They're a bit different than a simple retreat, but they have set the standard for such places in America, at least for artists.

    That doesn't mean your renovated farmhouse can't be a great retreat for other types of people, however. And it could be a great bed and breakfast!

    :)
     
  7. Heard someone say they had stopped renting out their guest cottage because of increased insurance.

    However, there is a young woman in this area who rents out "guest houses" to people who want something more than a motel room. A co-worker said her step-son and his family stayed in one for a 2 week visit. Everything but toiletries and food. Have no idea what she charges. PM me if you want her name and phone number.
     
  8. barefoot gal

    barefoot gal Member

    Messages:
    19
    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2004
    the 7:13 unregisted was me. Logging in does make it easier to PM!
     
  9. RAC

    RAC Guest

    That's true, insurance is an issue, not to mention your locality may impose a bed tax/occupancy tax, because you are essentially running a hotel (and any other tax they dump on the poor tourist), as well as all the other business taxes. On the other hand, as a legal business, you can deduct your expenses.

    And at least in the US, people expect B&Bs to be really upscale (i.e. worth the expensive rates) and special, otherwise for a place just to sleep, they may as well stay at the local Cheap-E Motel. In England, on the other hand, the B&Bs used to be really reasonable--someone was essentially renting out their spare bedroom for the night, and giving you breakfast in the dining room--no special toiletries or anything else. Often you shared a bathroom with another guest. More expensive than a hostel, but much cheaper than a hotel room.
     
  10. Shrek

    Shrek Singletree Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,111
    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2002
    Location:
    North Alabama
    Running an artist retreat has one major drawback... you have to deal with the wierd artists and many of them serching for their muse are broke also.
     
  11. Nette

    Nette Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    1,811
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Location:
    NC
    Shrek, that was exactly my worry!

    I don't know whether the "offsetting of expenses" is worth the aggravation of dealing with boarders, whether they're artists or not, whether it's a week-end or a week.

    Thanks for all the replies, guys! I'm going to take a look at your site references, and consider further!
     
  12. Cyngbaeld

    Cyngbaeld In Remembrance Supporter

    Messages:
    28,248
    Joined:
    May 20, 2004
    Location:
    SE Missouri
    Shrek, 'weird' is in the eye of the beholder.
     
  13. countrygrrrl

    countrygrrrl PITA

    Messages:
    1,265
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2003
    Location:
    Zone Unknown
    True enough! :haha:
     
  14. If it was me, I would look at doing two week leases with a largish company. This will give you some piece of mind about liability and deadbeats.

    I realize you were talking about artists, but money is not there forte, as pointed out above.

    Ranchers in some areas do something similar to this each year for deer season, a company will contract out the two week mule deer season for $1,000(+) per gun with a 12-15 gun limit. This is usually enough $$ to pay for the ranchers lease costs for the entire year.

    I realize you are not talking deer hunts but the basics still apply, companies have money and will spend for retreats, group work shops, etc which can easily last longer than a weekend.
    My 2¢