He said no real reason, other than to help me out. Wow, no one had even done that before…we’ll not so obviously anyway.
I was very grateful and we continued with our conversation about the empty apartments.
He asked what kind of marketing I was doing. I said we were doing signs, newspaper, bulletin boards…the usual. He said to cancel
the newspaper ad and change the signs to the little black and red For Rent signs. I said “Really”! I couldn’t believe he was asking me
to do something like that. But, that method wasn’t working so I agreed.
What happened next shocked the hell out of me!
He asked me if I wanted to go for a ride. Hmmm…this seems weird. Is this guy from the Mafia or something? It all seems very weird
from someone I just met.
I asked where are we going? He just said, about 25 minutes from here. OK, my gut told to go, so i went.
We talked about a lot of things on the way there but nothing about Real Estate or the apartments.
When we got there it was a construction site. I was totally confused now. He told me to wait as he went in to the GC’s (General Contractor)
trailer like he owned the place. He came out with two hard hats, gave me one and said follow me. We went to another trailer this time it was a
trailer for the plumbers. We went inside and he asked to speak with foreman.
He then asked the foreman if any of his men needed a place to rent. The foreman’s eyes light up. Yes! He said. I have 4 men that are driving 1 1/2 hrs
every day to get here.
What I didn’t know, is this was a Toyota plant and that all the hotels have been booked up for miles. So, unless you where one of the first
to the job site you had to drive out of town to find a room.
We talk about the apartments I had for rent and it all sounded good. But, one small problem. They needed to be furnished. My new friend
said that wouldn’t be a problem. Not a problem? I had a couple extra lamps, washer and dryers, but not enough to even fill one apartment.
I didn’t say anything because this guy seemed know what he was doing.
Within a couple of hours we had 12 of the 16 empties filled, signed leases and checks in hand. Some gave us a deposit and first months rent. Some prepaid
for 3 – 6 months. I can’t remember how much it was but I do remember saying holy ^&#^$!. And then I remembered the furniture! How are we going to furnish all of these places?
The furniture wasn’t a problem. We just went to second hand stores, garage sales and bought used items and for a couple hundred dollars it filled a apartment. Within a week I had 16 of the 16 apartments rented and the 12 from the construction workers filled with furniture.
Months later, I was receiving calls from workers at the Toyota plant asking if we had any apartments for rent. It was a blessing to tell them “not right now but, I can take your name, number and if something opens up I give you a call”.
I will always remember that day and how my new mentor helped me in a time of need.