The Accidental Business

Harlands Accountants

A friend of mine started a new business this year. But he didn’t actually mean to. It was an accident.

The House Move

After living in the same house, just outside a busy city for 15 years, my friend decided to move. He decided to move from the city to the countryside. Now I am sure this doesn’t happen all the time, but this particular house move – from ‘accessible’ (to the big city) to ‘remote’ (out in the country) – meant that the new property was 300% bigger than the old property, with only a 25% uplift in price. That, my friend discovered, was the price-premium for location.

Anyhow, along with this much bigger property came a new opportunity. An opportunity to create holiday studios.

Holiday Studios

The previous owners had let two parts of the countryside property out, for about two years, to walkers and historians interested in investigating the nearby Hadrian’s Wall and other similar attractions. That was the good news. The bad news was that the two studios had a ‘cheap and cheerful’ reputation. It was a side-line for the previous owners and the new owners – my friend and his family – were not happy with that. My friend totted-up a few numbers and decided that to run this business properly, repositioning it quickly, authentically and well so as to build a proper brand, would take investment. And he decided that the only way to make sense of the new offer to a new kind of customer, the only way to create something that he and his family would be proud of, the only way to create something that he and the target clientele would love, and the only way to create a sustainable busines worth doing – was to treble the nightly rate. Tricky!

Here’s how my friend tells the story of how his ‘accidental business’ came to life.

“We bought the new property in late 2020. And quite by accident really, we inherited two rather lovely, self-contained ‘spaces’ with our new home.

We imagined ourselves staying in these tiny-home spaces. We imagined beautiful, memorable, mind-blowing experiences. The likes of which we’d never experienced before. And as we are doers not talkers, we moved from ‘imagining’ to ‘doing’ very quickly.

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