IT'S ALL IN THE FAMILY
A little over 50 years ago, Charles and Sue Eckstine bought a 6-unit apartment building as an investment property. Their hope was to be able to use that investment to send their first daughter, who was just a baby, to college one day. At the time, neither had experience in the rental business, and they struggled to rent the first vacant unit. While sitting in the apartment trying to determine the problem, Charles looked around, realizing that it was not a place that he would want to call “home” either. Charles’ strong work ethic, one that had been instilled in him from a young age due to being raised on a dairy farm, kicked in, and he spent the next many evenings and weekends remodeling, painting, and cleaning the apartment.
It was at that point that Charles had an idea. Since the building was all one bedroom apartments, the ideal tenant would be someone who was just starting out on their own. To further attract that resident, Charles decided to furnish the apartment, which was a luxury that few-to-none other units were offering in the area at the time. The unit was quickly rented. Sue jumped into the duties of bookkeeping, leasing, and other administrative tasks, and their business was quickly underway.
Since then, the Eckstines have bought more properties and remodeled them, both inside and out. In addition to Charles' work ethic, living on a farm also taught Charles how to operate equipment, and it is not unusual to still see him behind the wheel of a truck, back hoe or bobcat working at one of the properties to ensure it is still a place that he would be proud to call home. They more than met their original investment goal and have developed a business that provides both residential and commercial properties. In more recent years, their daughters, Krista and Becky, have joined the business, managing the various properties and daily operations; meaning that when you call their business, as a potential or current tenant, you will always be in the hands of a family member.