We had the good fortune of connecting with Sophie Crash and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sophie, what role has risk played in your life or career?
My parents took the biggest risk of all when moving to the United States for a chance at a better life. So to me, taking risks is an essential part of life that has been modeled for me since before I was born. I know that without taking risks, it would have been impossible to achieve success and reach my full potential. Especially during uncertain economic times, taking risks can lead to great rewards. I once heard the quote “The biggest risk is not taking any risk…” by Mark Zuckerberg, and I live by that idea when it comes to my businesses. One of the main virtues of taking risks is that it has allowed me to pursue my various passions and interests, even if they may be unconventional. I have taken the risk of moving to other states or countries, learning new languages, investing in my education, changing careers, investing in real estate, trying new artistic endeavors, and even trying new fashion choices. Pursuing my happiness has led to meaningful and fulfilling lifestyle choices. It has allowed me to be creative, innovative, unique, and inspirational. Taking risks has allowed me to think outside the box and has led to success.
A second benefit of taking risks is that it allows individuals to learn and grow. Another famous quote by a person I really admire, Nelson Mandela, says “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” Starting a new career or small business can be very challenging, but it also provides an opportunity for personal and professional development. Your new business might fail, but that one failure does not define the risk-taker. If you learned an important lesson, then to me the risk was not a failure. Taking risks allows individuals to learn new skills, gain new perspectives, and develop the resilience and determination needed to succeed in the face of adversity.
And of course, taking risks can lead to financial rewards. The very definition of “entrepreneur” has the word “risk” in it: “a person who organizes and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risks in order to do so.” By taking risks, I have been able to create new income streams and achieve financial independence. It is very important to research your risks carefully, consider who else is affected (especially family), and take manageable risks based on where you want to go in life. In uncertain economic times, taking risks can be even more important. Economic downturns can lead to job loss and financial insecurity, but for me they have also presented opportunities for new ventures and growth. By taking risks in real estate during uncertain economic times, I have created new opportunities for myself.
In conclusion, taking risks is an important virtue that has led to success and reaching my full potential. Whether starting a new career or a small business, taking risks can allow you to pursue your passions, learn and grow, be creative and innovative, and achieve financial rewards. Even during uncertain economic times, taking risks can lead to great rewards and opportunities for growth and success.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
My first real estate business, CrashPadDallas, morphed from a hostel-style Airbnb to a full-blown real estate rental and management portfolio. Since then, I have sold and started a couple more businesses in real estate and one selling my artwork. I got to where I am after investing in a very underrated and underappreciated part of Dallas nearly ten years ago. That area has evolved into what is now known as the Bishop Arts District, and I wouldn’t be where I am today if I had not seen its potential. No, it was not easy. It was impossible to get loans within the first two years of operations. Since my business was unproven, it was also difficult to convince other people of letting us manage their properties. I overcame these initial challenges by teaming up with trusted friends and basically putting in all my time, money, savings, and credit worthiness on the line. Slowly I started getting clients interested in flipping their space to make it rent-ready and reap the rewards of an income property or even spare room. At first, I would renovate somewhat generically to please the most people possible. But now I have the artistic freedom to incorporate cultural elements, like the talavera tile sink in my most recent bathroom remodel. I look forward to having even more artistic freedom and taking design element risks. I have learned that it takes time to learn your own style, and it is always evolving. I want the world to know that my initial business success rose from a place of grief after losing my dad. I did not become successful until I realized that losing my dad did not mean losing all the lessons he taught me.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
The fantastic thing about Dallas, and the reason why it is my favorite city ever, is that there are so many free, low-cost, and community events happening. I would take my friend to see the free exhibits at the Dallas Museum of Art, followed by a stroll around the Arts District and a free visit to the Crow Museum. Then, I would take my friend to see the breathtaking views of Klyde Warren Park and explain how the area looked before they built the deck park. My friend would have the great pleasure of trying the best coffee in Dallas, Full City Rooster in the Cedars, which is fully owned and operated locally. As the sun goes down I will take my friend to the incredible AT&T Arts District, a newer district in the heart of downtown that incorporates technology in its incredible displays and live music, as well as the free museum and interactive games. We could grab something to eat at any one of dozens of places within walking distance, or take the number 9 bus on a quick trip to the heart of Oak Cliff for some amazing street tacos on Jefferson Blvd. Then we’d catch a movie or live show at the Texas Theatre, or walk up Bishop St for a trendy and instagrammable visit to all the Bishop Arts District murals. Total costs: transportation ($3 for a day bus pass), plus a cup of coffee and tacos or tortas ($11 + tip) and a $12 ticket at the Theatre, and you’ve barely spent $25 for a full day in Dallas!

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
First and foremost to deserve recognition are my parents, Martha and Jay, for taking the risk of leaving everything behind and immigrating to the US. My dad taught me the importance of literacy and education, and my mom taught me about perseverance and the importance of being multilingual. My dad lived his entire life to the fullest and modeled what my life looks like now. Through the grief of the sudden loss when he died, I became much more successful in life because I was trying desperately to hold on to the lessons he taught me. My earliest childhood memories are encouragement and mentorship from my school teachers. The incredible education in biology that I received at Texas A&M is transferable to every facet of my life, even if I am not currently in a science lab. My best friend and business partner when I first started flipping homes, Simon Rook, as well as my best friend from highschool, the artistic Jacob Huss, were both critical members of my team in the early days. My best childhood friend, whom I consider my brother, Chris Stephens deserves a medal for sticking by me for over 30 years. And a big thank you to all of those naysayers and ex’s who said I couldn’t, wouldn’t, or shouldn’t do something or who said I was “too much,” because I have been proving y’all wrong for a while now.

Website: Sophiecrash.com

Instagram: @sophia_crash

Other: TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@sophia_crashtx

Image Credits
Simon Rook

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