Sharing a better rental experience
Paulette represents a small but growing population of people who want to challenge the status quo when it comes to renting. Her focus is on creating a positive rental experience for all parties and building a connection between the landlord (Paulette herself) and the tenant. She’s looking for a relationship that is mutually beneficial for both parties.
Take a minute to read her Happipad profile and it’s easy to see Paulette’s viewpoint reflected in the language: “Integrity and having good relations is of great value to me. We hope to find a renter who shares some of the same values.” And if you dig a bit deeper it’s easy to understand why. Paulette’s own rental journey has been a challenge and now as a landlord she wants to help.
In 2003, shortly after she and her partner moved to Kelowna from Thunder Bay, Paulette’s relationship ended and she found herself a single mother raising a one and a half year old child. Realizing that she needed to upgrade her skills, she worked and attended courses in interior design. At this time Paulette was renting and she recalls her struggles moving from place to place vividly.
“It was really tough because with every move, it would take at least a week to find a place, pack, move, and then unpack. With a small child, it was really tough to find the time. I honestly don’t know how I did it,” says Paulette. And like many renters, Paulette accumulated some bad experiences with landlords that have influenced her current values.
“I had a landlord keep my deposit when they verbally told me that they wouldn’t. I could have fought for it, but I was just so tired that it wasn’t worth the time. It’s just money.” It may have just been money but it sure didn’t feel good. Experiences like these motivated Paulette to work harder so she could make a difference.
After completing her courses in 2007, Paulette launched Creative Touch Interiors, an award-winning interior design business specializing in renovation planning and management. But her roller coaster journey was not over yet. Like many companies in the Okanagan, her business was hit hard by the 2008 recession, which forced her to temporarily close the doors while she went back to school to further upgrade her courses. During this time Paulette experienced first hand the value of having positive support. She credits her network of friends from the Dragonboat Society in Kelowna for helping her during those tough years.
“If there’s one bit of advice I can give to anyone who’s struggling to get by, make sure you reach out, meet people, and ask for help. The Dragonboat Society has amazing people who were so welcoming to me. It’s amazing how your network will respond when you need help. I believe that we all fundamentally want to help each other.” That mentality has carried forward through the rest of her life.
When the economy picked up again in 2013, she re-launched her business and hasn’t looked back since. With a growing list of clients, a network of contractors, and after hiring an employee Paulette was ready to invest in her own future. Her success in business allowed her to achieve another milestone: buying her first home. And with that purchase came a new set of challenges that Paulette wanted to tackle with the integrity that was never afforded to her when she was a renter.
Having a spare room in her newly built townhouse in Glenmore, Paulette started looking for a tenant who could also integrate well into her home. “I wanted a platform to take care of the whole process of finding the right tenant.” When Paulette found Happipad she knew that she was onto something. When she learned that Happipad matched tenants based on personality, handled all the Guest screening, and other rental logistics, she was excited.
“I don’t have to worry about having the wrong person in my household.” Now Paulette feels like she is helping out and giving back to her community. “My tenant is pleasant to have around. He’s become part of our family.” And although there was no obligation for Paulette to provide additional services it seemed to happen naturally.
“I enjoy the morning and evening chats with my Guest. And I like helping out if he needs assistance with driving, shopping or even sharing meals.” It’s win-win. And what’s best is Paulette earns extra cash from having someone she likes in her home.
When I asked her if she had any other comments regarding how she was enjoying using Happipad Paulette simply stated, “Keep doing what you are doing.”
Paulette Facca – Happipad Host since 2018
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