CHAPTER 11 (continued)

Posted: June 1, 2014 in Uncategorized

transformation definition

“So if you can get the place tenanted and handle the paperwork every month I am willing to offer you a commission of 7% percent” said Mr. Ebrahim when the conversation shifted to negotiating price. The property has the potential to house up to twelve offices that will bring Mr. Ebrahim a handsome profit each month. He has been happy with my tenancy proposals already and thankfully the lease documents do not need any additions. His offer of a 7% commission will work out to a tidy sum. “Most rental agencies take a 10% commission” I said confidently, knowing that the extra work may mean me having to hire extra help. Mr. Ebrahim smiled, “So you have done your homework” he said. “Ok, you lack experience but I have confidence in you. My best offer is 9%” he said smugly. I was anticipating that offer. “9% is fine, as long as you paying all the lawyer fees, including lease renewals and we agree on a commission increase year on year” I stated. Mr. Ebrahim sat back in his chair and folded his arms. “Hmm and here I though I was saving money going with you” he laughed. “You have a good business sense Farnaz, and you drive a hard bargain. You a hard worker and I like that. So….” He shot an impressed look in my direction, “OK” he agreed.  I can guess he has never negotiated with a woman in business before. “The Auction is tomorrow, so if I get the place at the bargain price I am hoping, we will both benefit.” He said standing up. “I will let you know what happens tomorrow. In Sha Allah.” He says as he begins to walk out. “Jazakallah, Mr. Ebrahim” I said to him. “I appreciate the opportunity”. He nodded as he walked out.

As I sat in my office I wondered if this was the right thing for me. Initially I decided to take up the challenge to get my mind off the baby stuff. But recently the baby stuff is all I wanted to think about. I haven’t mentioned this new endeavour to Hussain and I wonder what he will think about it. Of course it will be more money for me. We do not have joint accounts, so it doesn’t benefit him at all. My working and earning was never an issue really. It was always understood though that whatever I earned was mine only. Sure, if I wanted to buy something for the house or him or even pay for a meal I could but mostly he was the breadwinner and he paid all the bills and paid for everything. That just the way it was. Hussain refused to have me pay for anything early on in my marriage and laid down the rules from the start. “it’s the shariah, Nazi – don’t argue with shariah” he said teasingly when I suggested joint accounts. “what’s yours is yours” he said. “it’s my duty as a husband to support you” he added. So I didn’t argue. I always hated that my mother had to ask my father for anything, so having my own money meant never having to do the same.  It is mostly for that reason – financial independence – that I was adamant to grow my business in the first place.

mr ebrahim




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