Keeping an eye on the home

After a career overseeing properties around the world for a Grand Rapids office furniture manufacturer, Jim Lawler has decided to parlay his background into a retirement business.
Marie Havenga
Oct 24, 2013

Lawler, who retired this year from his job as Steelcase's director of global facilities, recently launched Personalized Property Management Services. The business provides home watch services, construction project assistance and traditional property management services for rental units.

The idea hit him when he and his wife visited Florida for a month last April.

“When we did that, we didn't have anyone to watch our home,” Lawler said. “We thought, 'Wouldn't it be good if we could hire someone to watch our property for us when we're gone?’ When you're gone, things can happen. You can have a storm, a water leak, a number of things can happen.”

If tragedy does strike, Lawler said it would be comforting to know there is a qualified person available to handle the problem and get it fixed. So he decided to become that person.

“I'm not really one to just retire and quit and not do anything at all,” Lawler said. “I can only play golf so many days a week. I think it would be a good service and I have the contacts, I have the background, I have the experience to deal with these kinds of things.”

Home watch services can be tailored to customer needs – checking the furnace, watering plants, starting cars, forwarding mail, checking for leaks.

For information, visit



wow! how much did he have to pay for this huge ad? I know obits cost an arm and a leg.


Bet he's gonna win the Best Personalized Property Management Service Award in the next edition of the Tribune "Pay us and we'll make you the best dot dot dot" award circular.


great idea! take some notes lessthanamused


You want me to keep an eye on your house? Sure, just put your address on here and I'll drive by every night to see if things are ok....nitwit.


Not a bad idea, and I wish him all the best, but watch out for that Obama character. Since the Middle Class in America is shrinking, he does have his eyes on the growing Senior Class...good luck.


Retirement will not be the last thing for him. He is so motivated, he still have the urge to work despite the age. - Larry Starr Sarasota

Post a Comment

Log in to your account to post comments here and on other stories, galleries and polls. Share your thoughts and reply to comments posted by others. Don't have an account on Create a new account today to get started.