Olthof Homes is a three-generation, family-run business founded in 1961 by Fritz and Karen Olthof. Today their four sons, Scot, Todd, Dennis and Fritz, in addition to their grandson, Matt, help run the company. For 60 years Olthof Homes has been a mainstay in northwest Indiana. In 2017, however, they opened the Indianapolis division of Olthof Homes, where it became evident that they had missed the initial mark with their offerings.

“The homes in northwest Indiana are lovely, but we soon learned that homeowners in Indy were in search of different options,” says Lisa McCleskey, division manager with Olthof Homes.

olthof homesUpon that realization, the team tore up the inside of their model home so they could incorporate the needs and wants of the Indy market. McCleskey, who has worked for the company for nearly two decades, recalls greeting potential clients as the model was under reconstruction.

“There I was, sitting in a model with yellow construction tape all around me as people were coming in,” she says with a chuckle. “But honestly, it was a great opportunity to show our authenticity as a company because we explained to folks that we had missed the mark and were now fixing it. People appreciated our candor.”

The company is now flourishing in the Indy market with neighborhoods in Cumberland, Westfield, Plainfield, Greenfield and Brownsburg. In the last seven years Olthof Homes has helped 654 families realize the dream of home ownership. Brownsburg has two communities: Fairview West and Talon Woods. Fairview West offers both single-family homes and single-family, maintenance-free villas. Fairview West has 10 acres of woodlands, 44-plus acres of green space and 1.5 miles of walking trails. The Hudson is a ranch style that’s 1,903 square feet, and homeowners have the option of adding a sunroom to the back to gain an additional 144 square feet.

olthof homes“Right now ranches are hard to find, so people love this plan,” McCleskey says.

The Sedona, which is 2,444 square feet, includes a two-story great room with abundant windows.

The Willow, a 3,142-square-foot plan, comes with a three-car garage and is popular for larger families.

“Costs and interest rates have gone up, which has caused affordability to look different for a lot of families, and yet you can’t change the size of your family for affordability,” McCleskey says. “If you have five children, they’re probably not fitting very well in your smallest home. We have successfully provided a path to homeownership through our interest rate buy-down programs. All customers are loving the program and the flexibility that it provides, but we’re hearing lots of thank-yous from the customers who need that larger square footage.”

The Oakmont is 2,897 square feet, the Rowan is 2,820 and the Olympia is 2,397.

olthof homesTalon Woods is Brownsburg’s other community. It offers low-maintenance townhomes in a quaint community surrounded by nature. One of the factors that sets the Talon Woods townhomes apart is the fact that the garages are in the back. They also all have private courtyards and an outdoor kitchen with pergola and community gardens, which fosters neighborly gathering.

“It has a feel of, ‘Let’s do life together,’” McCleskey says.

The Talon Woods townhomes will range from 1,223 (two bed/1.5 baths) to 1,647 square feet (three bed/2.5 bath). These homes are great options for young professionals or anyone who wants the convenience of being able to come and go, and not have to worry about maintenance.

“You don’t have to mow lawn, trim bushes or spread mulch,” McCleskey says. “It’s all taken care of for you.”

These units are for sale now and will be ready for closing and move-in in September.

McCleskey has found that in recent years, many people long to be connected to the community in which they live. For a long time that wasn’t the case for some homeowners, who, for instance, wanted to avoid having their property back up against a walking trail because they favored privacy. Now, however, people love being close to walking trails so they can more easily connect with their neighbors.

To help people form those connections, the Olthof team often hosts events in their sales centers such Halloween Trick or Treat, Saturday Morning Doughnuts, and even a movie night held on a vacant lot next to the model. This spirit of connectedness has inspired homeowners to do the same.

“Your vibe attracts your tribe,” McCleskey says. “Homeowners put flyers in their neighbors’ mailboxes announcing that they’re having a chili cook-off, an Easter egg hunt or some other fun event.”

In addition, many homeowners want to reside in an area that has ample offerings. Brownsburg is ideal because it’s a growing town with a small-town feel. Plus, it’s close to parks, has a school system that’s ranked top-three in the state, and is an easy drive to downtown Indy.

At Olthof team meetings, they always read the names of all the customers who are closing on their homes that month.

“We say, ‘These are the people who trusted us to build their home. Let’s make sure what we turn over is what we promised them,’” McCleskey says. “Our goal is to find ways to make a difference for our clients.”

They recognize that they get to walk with people through some of the most difficult and most exciting times in their lives.

“Our clients share their stories of why they need this home,” McCleskey says. “Perhaps it’s due to a divorce, a death in the family or some other life change. No matter the reason, it’s a blessing to help people make one of the biggest decisions of their life.”

For more information, visit olthofhomes.com.

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