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disturbedproductions
05-11-2010, 09:12 PM
looking for advise and info on how others obtained funding for there Haunt
any help would be great

thanks

p.s.
please no doom and gloom about how haunts dont get financing or funding. I've heard it all, and I am just looking to see how others were able to start there haunt to see if there are any options I have not thought of.

soultrkr
05-11-2010, 09:40 PM
Check out Kelly Allens book he describes the best way how to approach finance with a Business plan.
No doom and gloom but in order to gain financing you will need a well thought out and well presented plan.
http://www.hauntbook.com/

unihaunter
05-12-2010, 12:43 PM
Credit cards and personal loans will be helpful.You don't have to tell what your doing with a personal loan our local bank would do personal loans with good credit.Who knows now if banks will do a personal loan.Good luck

Jim Warfield
05-13-2010, 12:33 AM
Finally decided that I had been asking the wrong person (people).
I decided I needed to find someone who had done something really "off the Wall' by common local standards, yet succeeded imensely!
This person would not only have the money but also the mind-set to see it possibly working.
As fate would have it, the next day HE called ME! (To fix his faucet) I pitched my idea, he said "Yes!"
In 1948 he flooded his cornfield. "He's crazy!" Made a lake, campground, summer stock theater, restaurant....
He then sent me to one of the banks he had money in, they said, "No."
"We don't make loans like that anymore ."
He then sent me to another bank he had money in, they said, "No, we don't loan money on condemmed property."
After four banks said no, he got mad threw his hat on the floor between his legs as he sat there and said, "I'll loan you all of the money myself!"
After this another eldely gentleman loaned me money to begin fixing the house because his Great grandfather used to tell him storys about this old inn and he didn't want to see it destroyed. (1870 inn & tavern with a huge stone arched ceiling wine cellar below the basement)
I had done work for both of these men, they knew my work ethic, this helped alot.
I have done probably 98% of all the work done on this house for these last 23 years, it takes more than just a loan sometimes to make something happen.
I don't know if you can use any of my stories fortunate circumstances to help you out , if you want it bad enough, and don't give up, many good things will usually happen.
Good Luck.

Raycliff Manor
05-13-2010, 10:34 AM
Disturbed,

If you check out recent Rotting Flesh Radio podcasts, I've been going over the development of a Business Plan in my segment of "The Business of Haunting". This week's coming show is Part 3 in a 4 part series covering the business plan topic.

I've found that covering such a broad topic in segments is quite an undertaking! Once I've completed the last segment I'm going to start talking about less broad topics so that I can keep the segments shorter.

At any rate, what I've done is essentially take the seminar I was going to be teaching at Transworld this year and break it up into segments for the show. If you're serious about approaching investors, loan officers or potential business partners, you'll definitely need a business plan. Even if you already had the money to go it alone, you need a business plan to increase your odds of success.

I hope this helps! ;)

Kel

P.S. Those of you with specific questions related to starting and operating a haunted attraction business, please shoot your questions to me at kelly@hauntbook.com so I can add them to my list of topics to address!

RJ Productions
05-13-2010, 03:22 PM
A reason you hear so much "doom and gloom" is because it IS doom and gloom. Face it, regular businesses are closing at an alarming rate. It makes it difficult to near impossible to get fianancing for a "normal" business. The investor has the opportunity of getting a return 365 days a year. A haunt business has it's return over 30 days!!!!

I'm not saying doom and gloom for the industry, we're doing OK, it's just we NEVER fit the model for normal businesses or business plans so it becomes extremely difficult to near imposible to get anyone outside our industry to understand the potential.

So if you want money for a haunt you will probably be limited to personally fianancing. So either you put your own cash (savings, investments), get friends or family to invest or get your local loan shark involved!!! Personally I used savings then maxxed out several credit cards.

Not doom and gloom....just reality. And the fianancing it the most critical part of your haunt. It's the main reason for haunt failure. One of the things we DO share with "normal" businesses!! Also a word of warning, never invest more than you can afford to lose. And if you can't get the funding to do it right....don't do it. Save up if necessary and wait. Go in underfunded and you drastically increase your chance of failure.

HauntedOzarks
05-14-2010, 12:06 AM
A good business plan is the best start. My partners and I worked long hours developing a business plan. One of the best resources we used was to contact a local college and got a marketing intern to help us with our market study for class credit. All the market data plus our creative ideas helped us create a good plan.

That was 2009. We ended up getting a late start that year, so after a few frustrating months of a bunch of "almosts" we passed our deadline and decided to wait for the 2010 season. Over the winter I went through and cut our budget by around 50%, updated the plan and set back out.

For finding financing, the best advice I can give is to tell EVERYBODY you know about it just in casual conversation. You never know what those connections will lead to. In our situation, one of our partners was just taking a friend to lunch and brought up the haunt in passing. Well as it happens, this friend just came into a large inheritence. He asked to see our plan and within two weeks we had a firm committment to fund the whole thing. It can happen.

Jim Warfield
05-14-2010, 12:58 AM
When beginning here another man had just inherited a wad of money from a relative. He always wanted to try the restaurant/night club business, so he did. He named his place "R G's" and it was located at the opposite end of this little town from my place, Ravens Grin.
Maybe a year later he was out of the business. His landlord and the landlord's Wife decided to force him out, they thought they smelled "money", even though they had already tried a restaurant in the same building before he did without success.
As his lawyer added up what money he had lost in the deal, he said, "Well, at least you had it to lose." (Versus owing a lending institution your house, ex cetra)
He even had someone playing the piano at night in his RG's. People coming to my place just get to hear my piano play one note but they are still coming back, paying to get in, and guess what? Nobody is even near my piano when it plays that one note!
I guess sometimes it's true:"Less Is More!"
(Maybe many of them are returning time after time waiting for that second note to play?)
"Someday, someday..."

Rocky Mountain Terror
05-14-2010, 06:26 PM
Disturbed,

If you check out recent Rotting Flesh Radio podcasts, I've been going over the development of a Business Plan in my segment of "The Business of Haunting". This week's coming show is Part 3 in a 4 part series covering the business plan topic.

I've found that covering such a broad topic in segments is quite an undertaking! Once I've completed the last segment I'm going to start talking about less broad topics so that I can keep the segments shorter.

At any rate, what I've done is essentially take the seminar I was going to be teaching at Transworld this year and break it up into segments for the show. If you're serious about approaching investors, loan officers or potential business partners, you'll definitely need a business plan. Even if you already had the money to go it alone, you need a business plan to increase your odds of success.

I hope this helps! ;)

Kel

P.S. Those of you with specific questions related to starting and operating a haunted attraction business, please shoot your questions to me at kelly@hauntbook.com so I can add them to my list of topics to address!

Kel, this would be a GREAT topic to cover after your done with your business plan segments!!! I think I have seen more posts about financing on this forum than about any other topic.

disturbedproductions
05-15-2010, 08:28 AM
thanks to every one to your input, I guess i should have been a little more specific What i am looking for is the names of different banks/lenders that people in the industry have had luck or a good working relationship with.

I have a very well put together biz plan ( do to the fact that 1 of my biz partners is a lawyer and the other has a biz degree)
I also have an in depth marketing plan along with years 1-5 in financial projections

i dont belive my biz plan is the problem i think i may just be go to the worng place to get money

Thanks again

also Kelly I have been listening to your segment on rotting flesh radio and i think its great cause i think alot of people overlook the biz side of a haunted attraction

Raycliff Manor
05-15-2010, 08:40 AM
The best bank to go to is one in the community you plan to operate your business. Be sure to include in your business plan the ways in which you will benefit the other area businesses. Lenders love to see this information! You always want to apply to a local bank because they have a vested interest in your business and the local business community. Our first business loan, when we were starting up, was with a conventional loan. Since then we've gotten 3 SBA loans to support the growth of the business. The most recent was this year.

If you are going to be applying for an SBA Loan, contact SBA and find out which bank in your area writes the largest volume of SBA Loans. This will increase your chances of success in obtaining a loan.

I can't remember the website address, but search for "SBA Preferred Lender Program" and for "National Association of Guaranteed Lenders". This should get you to what you need.

Keep in mind that lenders will typically require at least two things...

1. up to 20% of investment to come from you
2. Something to use as collateral (usually the property you are purchasing and/or equity in your home, CD's or other investments, etc.)

I hope this helps!

Kel