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home : community : business May 24, 2016

10/1/2013 3:44:00 PM
Family business has served Othello for 30 years
Noah, Meghan and Eric of the Olsen family can help you find the perfect home in the Othello area. Photo by Erik Pague.
Noah, Meghan and Eric of the Olsen family can help you find the perfect home in the Othello area. Photo by Erik Pague.
Erik Pague

The Olsen family name is a recognizable one in Othello. For more than 30 years and spanning three generations, the Olsens have ran their real estate business, Sun Basin Properties, to help buyers find their dream homes and property in the Othello area. If there isn't a house that's perfect for customers, the other front of their business, Olsen Homes, can help customers plan and build their own home.
Eric Olsen, the senior real estate agent for Sun Basin, has been with the family business since 1983 and took over its operation upon their retirement. Since buying the business from his parents, Olsen has seen quite a few changes, but for the most part, he's happy to be part of a stable and consistent business.
In the early 90s, Eric's brother Pete founded Olsen Homes and has since become a crucial component to the family business.
"That's been an integral part of it ever since then," Olsen said. "He works right out of our office here ... and it's kind of nice that we're all under the same roof. That way, we can be pretty coordinated with what we do."
Olsen said having the family's help in all facets of the business has helped, but more importantly, being native to Othello has helped to build relationships with customers. As a realtor, Olsen knows building these healthy relations can make or break a career in the industry. He's also fluent in Spanish, which has helped him to expand his business to the Hispanic community.
"A lot of it is just the relationships you have with people," he said. "If you've lived in the same area for a number of years, you know a lot of people."
Olsen said the fact the business has been operating so long and has built so many connections provides them with plenty of tools to help their customers. From finding nice property, buying a used home or commercial business or completely building from scratch, there's not much Sun Basin can't help with.
"In a small community, you have to be generalists and you have to try to offer all kinds of services," Olsen said. "The only thing we don't offer is we don't get involved in rental management, but as far as sales, we're able to take on anything that comes through the door."
The third generation of the family joined on when Meghan Olsen, Eric's niece and Pete's daughter, earned her real estate license when she was 18. She was attending college at the time but has now been with the company full time for four years as a realtor and also helps with her father's half of the business with scheduling subcontractors.
"Compared to business school, you have to have a lot of street smarts, too," she said. "You learn from experience, definitely."
Now that Meghan's picked up some of that crucial experience, she plans to become one of the top agents in town.
"It takes a few years to build your name as a realtor," she said. "My goal is to keep progressing toward being known as one of the main realtors in Othello and learning more about construction."
This summer, Sun Basin has shifted into its second phase of developing lots at Ashwood Notch located on Cypress Street near Wahitis Elementary School. Meghan said they're now ready to talk with customers about possibly purchasing property there. New floor plans are also available through Olsen Homes.
Sun Basin Properties and Olsen Homes are both located at 610 S. First Ave. and can be reached at 488-5651.

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