TAZEWELL, VA – FEBRUARY 28, 2020 — Renee Perkins used to live next door to the home on 516 Carline Avenue in Tazewell, Va., but when that home went up for auction, she bid on it and won the bid. The next step was to decide what to do with the 100-year-home. With the help of her brother, who did most of the contracting renovation work on the project, Perkins turned it into The Red Roof Home, LLC — appropriately named based on its red tin roof — which provides lodging to area visitors.
The Red Roof Home, LLC was recently approved for a Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority $10,000 seed capital matching grant.
“VCEDA was pleased to assist The Red Roof Home, LLC in its efforts to renovate the property to provide additional lodging options for tourists coming into the area as this region’s tourism economy continues to grow,” said Jonathan Belcher, VCEDA executive director/general counsel. “Additional plans Renee Perkins has for the property will see it grow further and according to the application, she anticipates the business will grow to include one full-time and three part-time employees.”
The new business offers lodging in several rooms. Common living and kitchen areas provide visitors with all the comforts of home. Open year-round, the business seeks to provide lodging for Back of the Dragon visitors, other tourists and business travelers. Ultimately, Perkins would like to see it expand to be a full bed and breakfast location.
The VCEDA funds will be used to renovate the kitchen in the home, which currently, guests have access to during their stay.
“We’ve had some business travelers as well as some tourist travelers,” Perkins said. “We are listed on Air bnb and we are open year-round.”
Perkins said she has had not only new visitors stay at the home, but a fair amount of repeat business as well.
“It took a lot of effort to renovate this house,” Perkins said, noting that when she purchased it, the home was in need of a variety of repairs and sprucing up.
“When I used to live next door, I wondered why it was not torn down, but after I saw it when it went up for auction, that changed and I decided it would be better to renovate it,” she added.
She enlisted the help of her brother, Cicero Goddard, and together, they worked to renovate the home.
“There were a lot of naysayers in the beginning, but we got it done and now it is open,” Perkins said. “It was a long road in getting the home ready for guests. The VCEDA grant has meant the world to me. My hope is to provide a warm welcome for guests and to help increase the repeat business we get.”
Perkins worked with Margie Douglass, director of the Small Business Development Center at Southwest Virginia Community College in the development of her application to VCEDA. The Tazewell County Industrial Development Authority provided a letter of support to VCEDA for the project.
About Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority and Southwest Virginia’s e-Region: The Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority, created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1988 to enhance and diversify the region’s economy and help create jobs, markets Southwest Virginia’s e-Region and its focus on electronic information technology, energy, education, emerging technologies, and entrepreneurship. VCEDA is a unique economic development organization that manages funds for economic development projects from a percentage of the coal and natural gas severance taxes paid by coal and natural gas companies that operate in the region. Located in southwestern Virginia, the region includes Buchanan, Dickenson, Lee, Russell, Scott, Tazewell, and Wise counties and the City of Norton. www.vceda.us or www.e-Region.org.
About the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority Seed Capital Matching Grant Fund: VCEDA region for-profit businesses one year and under with less than 10 full-time employees are eligible to apply for dollar-for-dollar matching grants up to $10,000 from the VCEDA Seed Capital Matching Fund. Applicants work with the Small Business Development Centers at Mountain Empire and Southwest Virginia community colleges to prepare the applications to VCEDA that include detailed business and financial plans. Businesses must be located in or plan to operate in the VCEDA region in southwestern Virginia that includes Buchanan, Dickenson, Lee, Russell, Scott, Tazewell, and Wise counties and the City of Norton.