Comfort can kill you
On a recent morning, I was heading back from a new acquire we have out in the Ranger area of Gordon County. The house is currently being rehabbed to get it rent ready.
I was at the house after leaving the gym before 7 a.m. to drop off some materials for the guys.
We got them unloaded, and I headed home to take a shower and get the day started.
As I was traveling down 411, I saw a squirrel start to cross the highway. I slowed down to give him time to make it safely. He scurried across one lane and then made it almost 3/4 of the way across my lane before he realized I was approaching. That’s when fear, and I guess instinct, took over for him.
You never can tell what’s about to happen in these situations. You hope they will take two leaps forward in the direction they were going and make it to safety off the road. I watched the little creature as he contemplated what to do. As I approached, he did a zig back then a zag forward, before settling on making a bee line back in the direction he had come.
There was a tense couple of seconds where I squinted my eyes and titled my head hoping not to hear a “bump bump” from my tires. Thankfully, I passed and saw a little fluttering tail disappear on the opposite side of the road in my rearview mirror.
As I drove home, I couldn’t help but ponder this whole situation. I mean really — why in the world didn’t that squirrel take the few steps forward needed to get off the road instead of getting caught up in indecision and making a hasty retreat that resulted in running more than double the distance to make it to safety while risking impending death?
I think the answer is because there is comfort in what is familiar. The squirrel had already been on the other side of the road and knew it was safe there. But he almost died trying to get back to what was familiar and comfortable.
Isn’t this a great parallel for what people experience as they travel the road of life?
I know I have run backwards when new things made me uncomfortable. But there’s a saying that says, “There is no growth in the comfort zone. And there is no comfort in the growth zone.”
For the squirrel, comfort could have killed him. But for entrepreneurs, comfort can kill your business.
We are stepping out of our comfort zone in our business right now to implement some new things on our property management side. The way we’ve been doing business has not kept up with increasing expectations of instant gratification from society.
You see, the only thing we’ve ever gotten a poor review on is the time it takes us to work applications and return phone calls for a property we have on market. That’s because when we list a property for rent, we get more calls and applications that we can handle in a timely manner.
To remedy this situation, we’re going to harness two technologies. One is called Buildium, and the other is Rently.
Rently is going to streamline how we show our rental properties. It has special lock boxes that can only be opened by using an app, which potential tenants get prescreened through before they can view the property. Once they see the property, they can fill out an application generated from Buildium.
Buildium gives us the ability to streamline the application process and can even instantly generate denial letter for applicants who don’t meet our minimum criteria. This new process will drastically cut down on the phone calls we receive, and it should deliver fewer and better-quality applications, which we can run down in-house very quickly. Therefore, our showing and screening should be way more efficient.
In the wake of the covid memorandums that landlords faced, these are just a few of the things we’ve changed to help us jump forward and not get killed by retreating to the comfort found in the old way of doing business.
Joe and Ashley English buy houses and mobile homes in Northwest Georgia. For more information or to ask a question, go to www.cashflowwithjoe.com or call Joe at 678-986-6813.