Synchronicity refers to unrelated events that end up being meaningful. I could hardly have a better example of it than what happened this past week.
I come from that school of customer service that says you should do whatever you can to be helpful. And so when I saw that a twitter follower named @missfish in Ottawa was looking for a rental unit while her home was under renovation, I thought I’d lend a hand.
Rentals, I should tell you, are one of those loss-leaders for realtors. They involve a pile of paperwork and the commissions are small (usually half a month’s rent to the cooperating brokerage). Lots of times you do all the work of showing clients around places only to have them find a rental property on their own.
In this case, I couldn’t find anything of interest on MLX that was furnished and in @missfish’s price range so I started passing on listings from Ottawa Kijiji and elsewhere, even though those listings didn’t pay a commission.
As it turned out, @missfish eventually found a rental by herself via District Realty, which is a property management company in Ottawa. She tweeted about how impressed she was with them. Meanwhile, I had been contacted by a UK doctor who needed a furnished place for a year in the same area. Because of @missfish’s recommendation, I contacted District Realty, but they advised that they don’t handle furnished units.
I then discovered that a lawyer friend of mine had been posted to China and needed to rent his furnished condo while he was away.
By then, District Realty had been in touch with the UK doctor to tell him they would look into furnishing a unit for him, so I’ve now referred my lawyer pal to District Realty as well, since he wants to have a good property manager handling things while he’s gone.
Meanwhile, I was really chuffed to see this entry in @missfish’s very popular blog today:
“Important sidebar: I need to send out a HUGE THANK YOU to District Realty. I was so impressed by their service. They went above and beyond the call of duty and found this place for us. If you are looking for a place to rent in Westboro for any length of time do yourselves a favour and call them first! Thank you as well to Peggy Blair (@peggy_blair on Twitter), an Ottawa realtor and mystery writer who held my hand and helped us look for a place too. :)”
So there you go! By lending a hand (or holding one, as @missfish says), I got a nice mention in a local blog (which is great, because real estate is all word-of-mouth); my lawyer friend will have a great property manager, the UK doctor will be taken care of, and I now have a company I can make referrals to when people contact me about renting. Synchronicity!