Optimism. It was a favorite theme of our parents when they told us to hold our heads high and keep our chins up. We heard it from coaches and teachers who suggested that we should look on the bright side of things. “Count your blessings,” is advice often heard from friends and counsellors. Optimism is a recurring element of books, movies and music. If we try hard enough, we can almost hear Louis Armstrong urging us to “Grab your coat, grab your hat, leave your worries on the doorstep. Just direct your feet to the sunny side of the street.”
Optimism has been described as hopefulness and confidence about the future or about the successful outcome of something. Most of us have lived long enough to know that an optimistic path filled with hope feels much better than the pessimistic one characterized by a sense of dread or despair. Medical and psychological research suggests that there are tangible and even provable positive effects when we live our lives optimistically.
Optimists feel healthier. If we tend to believe that life will work out in our favor, we are more likely to rate our sense of well-being and health higher. Optimists have a lower incidence of cardiovascular disease and better cholesterol numbers and are generally healthier. Optimists live longer, and their immune systems are stronger. They tend to have better relationships with others, they enjoy their work more, and they are less prone to stress.
Being an optimist makes emotional, medical, and psychological sense. Sometimes, however, troubling circumstances can make even the most happy-go-lucky person worry, and doubt can creep in causing us to become, well, pessimistic. In these days of the twenty-four-hour news cycle and with the explosion of social media, it seems that, everywhere you look, someone is dying to tell you how bad things are and how worse they are going to get.
This constant drumbeat of negativity can affect people in all walks of life, and builders are not immune from the stories that affect us all. Some stories, however, hit closer to home with builders. Labor shortages and supply chain problems have lingered after the pandemic and still have not resolved. War in Europe has spooked financial markets and wreaked havoc on the price of oil. Inflation and the resultant hike in interest rates have made some homebuyers skittish and have driven some out of the market altogether.
When we think about these circumstances, we could hang our heads or mope around. But it is important, even in times like these, to be optimistic and to consider the words of Benjamin Franklin who wrote, “While we may not be able to control all that happens to us, we can control what happens inside us.” That is, we can choose to keep our chins up, count our blessings and look on the bright side of things. We control what happens inside us by staying optimistic, and in that way, we continue to enjoy life and reap the benefits that optimism brings.
Not letting these kinds of problems affect our mood or our outlook on life is healthy, but thinking positively about the future will not make the problems go away. What is an optimist to do in these circumstances? The great British statesman Winston Churchill answered this question when he wrote: “The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.”
Rather than wringing his hands over a tough economy, the optimist looks for whatever opportunities these difficult times present. If we are not as busy building houses, we can identify our best workers and subcontractors and do those things necessary to keep them in the fold. We can also cull those who are problematic, who are not team players, or who do not fit into our long-term plans. We can analyze the market and check to see if the designs we offer our customers are consistent with current trends. We can sharpen our pencils and decrease expenses by finding the best value in building supplies and by looking for more efficient ways to build our homes. By seeing these opportunities in our present difficulties, the optimistic builder can make his company stronger and come roaring out of these doldrums at the helm of a better and more profitable company.
Making money from the work that goes into creating a business and running it well is good, but keeping those hard-earned dollars is even better. We believe one of the best ways for you to protect your bottom line and to hold on to more of your profits is to place a MHWC/RWC warranty on every home you sell. After closing on a home, you can get on with building the next one, confident that your homebuyers are in good hands and that any construction defect claims they have will be handled with the utmost care and professionalism.
In our decades of home warranty experience MHWC/RWC has covered more than four million homes. We offer a wide variety of warranty options and all warranties provide clear performance standards that help create realistic homeowner expectations and provide a road map to resolving even the stickiest customer complaints.
At MHWC/RWC, every guarantee our warranties make is backed by Western Pacific Mutual Insurance Company, RRG. Western Pacific has an A- rating from A.M. Best and only insures home warranty and similar new home construction risks. No other warranty company has an insurer with this kind of strength solely dedicated to covering builders and their homes.
We are optimists here at MHWC/RWC, and we know life is better on the bright side. Here’s hoping your homeowners and you join us there!
Have a great Summer!