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People are becoming really innovative to stay afloat – Editor’s letter

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This is such a pivotal moment in time for businesses and for individuals as we emerge from half a year of a global pandemic.

Some of us have lost loved ones, many have lost jobs or are working on reduced salaries, some may have lost their homes … pandemics are not by nature fun moments in history. And yet many are still out there making a plan.

In my quest to investigate how locals are surviving the pandemic I have come across some really innovative things they are doing to stay afloat – and some involve using their land and property to make ends meet.

One such woman from Khayelitsha, Cape Town, lost her job as a cleaner when the business she worked for folded because of the pandemic. With the payout she received, she is building two flats on her property. She already has tenants who will be moving in when the flats are complete, and the income she will receive will, in fact, be more than she earned monthly as a cleaner, she says.

“I had to think how I was going to take care of myself. I had seen others before this problem make money from ‘backyarding’.” She has gone from being a cleaner at a business to being a landlord and businesswoman.

These are the types of stories that keep our office buoyant during the week and that are shoots of green during some tough times. Many people are renting out spare rooms or even their homes while moving into the granny flats on the property.

I think this clearly shows how property is an asset that can be utilised when the usual ways of making money run dry. It also shows the resilience and tenacity of South Africans and humans in general. I’d love to hear how you are innovating and creating during this time.

Please do email me.

Warm regards

Vivian Warby

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