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Stop asking for last month’s rent, please.

Hi, Garrett here. I’m the founder of hygge coworking.

Disclaimer: These are my opinions and experiences. While it may feel I’m patting myself on the back, I’m only communicating what has worked for me. If you’ve had different experiences or found something that really works please share it with me at garrett@wearehygge.com. I’ll update this post to reflect alternative ideas and experiences. I would love that. For now, they are just mine.

I’ve got a quick thought and wanted to get it out while it was top of mind. Let’s talk about asking your new members to pay for their last month’s rent right at sign up.

Here’s the thing: Please stop.

I’m a community builder. When someone joins my community I want them to plant a flag. I want them to call hygge home. I’d like them to stay forever, which means I’ll never need that last months rent. Their last month doesn’t exist in my world.

The moment you ask for last month’s rent you’re already talking about when this person leaves. Indirectly or not, you’ve put a cloud over this person’s new membership.

Hygge coworking is in a non-traditional real estate industry. I don’t need to follow the old school rules of lease, landlord and terms. I get to make them up as I see fit. You do as well.

I do month-to-month with a 30 day notice on all memberships from flex to private office. I’m very clear about this policy when people tour and sign up and almost never have a problem collecting the 30 days if someone decides they move on. Something like “I’d love for you to stay forever but in the off chance your circumstances change we’d really need a 30 day notice”. To this, most people reply “of course!”

There’s several advantages to this from a space operations standpoint. By keeping everything month-to-month with a 30 day notice you can keep your community moving in the right direction if someone starts to to feel like the wrong fit. You have the ability to remove someone without the risk of eviction notices hanging on doors. Remember, that’s for the old-school real estate world. Keeping it membership based allows us, with a smartly worded membership agreement to remove anyone that isn’t a good fit whenever we see fit. You need to have the control.

In closing, what is going to make your community grow fast and sustain itself? It’s by getting as many new people to plant a flag and call your space home. Try clinging to the this single idea. You have the opportunities to have your members on your side even after circumstances change, and they have to leave. It’s really that simple.

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