Sponsored: farm diversification - five things to remember

Hoseasons explains the key aspects to consider when deciding to diversify your rural business into the holiday rental sector
hoseasons sponsored post

With many sectors witnessing the fall-out of post-Brexit and Covid-19 market disruption, holiday rental experts, Hoseasons, has reported seeing increasingly more farmers and landowners looking for an additional income stream by diversifying into holiday rentals.

Luke Hansford, Senior Vice President Business Development, at Awaze – the parent company of Hoseasons said, “Having a different stream of income can be a worthwhile investment for your future as a farming family or landowner. With staycations continuing to be popular choices for short and longer breaks, UK holidays is a trend here to stay.”

Whether you’re an established landowner or family-run farming business looking to maximise your earning potential, here are just five key things to remember:

1) Be savvy with your savings

Explore whether you could be legible for EU grant funding or other support to help offset the total project. Decide what would be the best use of your land – renovating an out-building or barn into a holiday cottage, installing ready-built lodges onto a piece of land, or perhaps semi-permanent structures would better-suit your long-term goals? Bearing in mind that there’s an ongoing trend for quirky accommodation such as treehouses, pods, shepherd’s huts, yurts and other glamping structures.

2) Seek out the experts early-on

Do involve an established and credible holiday rental expert such as Hoseasons during the early stages. The team can advise on other decisions during the infancy of the project such as recommending the size and scale of the lodges and provide free consultancy on some of your key plans and approaches. In 2022, over 50% of new owners who joined Hoseasons were still in the development stage of their farm diversification project.

3) Find reassurance

Most landowners and farmers don’t have any previous experience in hospitality or the travel industry. With the right support, often it’s just some reassurance, guidance and a few industry tips you’ll need. Hoseasons’ support is invaluable in supporting the diversification process. They can help with hospitality advice, and above all, the team will give you the confidence needed to move forward with the different aspects and stages of your journey.

4) People and staffing

You’ll probably find that you can do most of what’s required. Companies like Hoseasons can manage and drive bookings, facilitate customer payments and support you with ongoing sales and marketing, too. As a family-run business, you’ll need to decide whether you need flexible or part-time staff to support the farming side of the business or help run the holiday-lets and help with cleaning and maintaining the holiday lodges? Or perhaps you can enlist other family members to help-out during busy periods?

5) Product, price, promotion

Deciding on the best pricing and book strategy is crucial. Your holiday rental advisors can help you define your pricing strategy. Hoseasons also run quarterly seminars and industry talks which offer an invaluable way to discover staycation trends and what customers really want.

Discover how Hoseasons can help bring your vision to market