Add Value and Raise Your Venue Price – Make Money from Home
Are you terrified of charging more for your services? Raising the venue price for some is a no brainer and for others, like me, an emotional struggle.
My husband works in the corporate world and has helped me understand the when and why of raising the price in business. The worst thing would be to do nothing and start to resent your business.
If you are not compensated well in your business venture it could get very discouraging. After all, Les and I want to make money, so we can accomplish our goal of paying off our house. Being in charge means you are in control of policies and price, no second guessing allowed.
The best way to justify raising prices is by adding value to the venue. Value is created in many ways. Let me share how we have added value to the venue over the years.
Here at the Ridge, we purposed to not go into debt to start our business. We avoid debt by making improvements each year. Improvements happen in the spring or fall if we have the cash on hand. You’ll have cash if you plan ahead. What have we added to bring value to our home business? Let me share 5 ways.
Building the Barn
We started the barn the first year of business but didn’t get it finished until wedding season started the next year. Our barn is not the country red horse barn or even the old weathered farm barn. It’s a modern barn with a tan metal exterior and cement floor.
I did not want to look at a red barn out my kitchen widow the rest of my life! I love the old country red barns don’t get me wrong, but really there are enough barn venues in our area for those who want a red barn.
Our barn sports beautiful café lights strung on the inside and is open on one side toward the view. It is large enough to allow guests to get out of the rain or sun if needed. I was adamant about having a place to get out of the rain. I would not rent a place that didn’t have a rain back-up, so I couldn’t expect others too either.
It wasn’t long before we realized people didn’t know where to enter the venue at from the parking lot. Showing and telling guest was okay for the parking attendants (my son and husband) until the wedding guest rush started in the parking lot. And there is always a rush just before ceremony start time.
Everywhere I go I notice things, it’s a curse (a curse I love :), my mind does not shut off. I knew we needed a way to make it obvious how to enter the venue from the parking lot. Everywhere I went I noticed beautiful pergola entrances. From there I started looking on Pinterest. I love Pinterest, it just makes my ideas come to life.
Sweet hubby can build anything I need, or was that want, lol! It was an easy way to make the entrance visible and beautiful at the same time. Brides can even decorate it if they like.
Creating an Activities Area
There was an area in our lawn that was an eye sore! It needed a purpose, so I gave it one. I dug a hole back into the hill and leveled it off (yes hubby was a bit surprised when he came home from work :). We needed to add some retaining wall stones on the uphill side. At this point sweet hubby stepped in… I was not doing it quite right. Plus, those stones are stink’n heavy!
We then added 12 x 12 pavers for the floor and put river rock around the edges where needed. It’s probably about a 12 x 7 area. It was that way for at least one wedding season and then we added a pergola over the top of it.
It is now landscaped all around the back and sides. We also add a shade sail over the top during wedding season. This area is used a lot. It has served as a bar area and/or dessert area at most every wedding to date. It looks out to the view and is quite lovely.
Landscaping and Decor
Probably one of the best ideas I had was adding the lights across the lawn where the receptions would all take place. Um, if I remember correctly sweet husband was not happy about this idea.
Granted all my ideas involve him and sometimes he just gets tired of trying to keep up with me, dang it anyway. He said, “Teri, really?!” I said, “yes, please?” I have my lights and even he is willing to admit that it “really” was a good idea.
Also, every year I get a few new items for the venue. Things like greenery garlands, old doors, wine barrels, add center piece options. Last year we leveled an area under the trees and placed a pair of stationary French doors for a photo area. Photographers and brides love it!
We even had time to make our own hand wash station. This was a replacement for the rented version and way prettier. When your mind works overtime, there is always a new project on the horizon.
If you have read my eBook: How to Start and Run a Wedding Venue – In Your Own Backyard you know that our master bedroom was the groomsman’s room for more years than I want to remember. We added a cottage for this purpose last year and it has been such a blessing. The guys love their own personal space and we love it too, lol.
We purchased a large shed from a local business. It was unfinished on the inside, but sweet hubby worked his magic and it is now a wow factor! From the very beginning the cottage was part of the plan, but you make do until it’s time. I believe this to be a big draw for us. From what the guys tell me it’s one of the best groomsman’s cottages they have seen. That makes me happy.
Add Value and Raise Your Venue Price – Make Money from Home
Adding value does not have to be expensive. You can decide what you want to add and when. We have had our plan in place from the beginning. Sometimes we added things quicker than expected and some are still not done. Consider what will bring the most value with the funds you have and go from there.
By adding value each year, we have been able to increase price about every two years. I know what I want to cap out at and I have a ways to go. This year I’m getting my dream project done and I’m so excited!! It will be interesting to see if the brides think it is a dream addition or not. 😊
Be sure and put your value projects in your venue business plan , and don’t be afraid to raise your prices accordingly.