Company News

Northwoods, Shepherd Partner on Seniors’ Homes

HOWLAND, Ohio – Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Retirement Services Inc. and Northwood Realty Services of Ohio are partnering to help seniors transition from home ownership to living at two Shepherd campuses.

Under the arrangement, Northwood will help market the 184 condominiums at Shepherd’s Howland and Poland campuses, and will assist seniors with selling their existing houses.

“It’s going to be a great match with not only promoting [Shepherd’s] condos but also having the opportunity to help senior citizens transition to that kind of life,” said Steve Ferrebee, sales manager at Northwood’s Howland office. “This is a unique situation that’s the first of its kind in the Valley.”

Representatives of both companies attended an open house Tuesday to showcase one of the condo units.

“We’ve been doing a lot of brainstorming because a lot of people don’t know about our hidden treasure here,” said Dawn Olson, director of marketing and admissions for Shepherd of the Valley-Howland. Marketing the condo units is difficult because Shepherd doesn’t have access to the multiple listing service or other advertising resources that real estate firms like Northwood do.

Olson, a former real estate agent, worked with Ferrebee and “knew that he would be the best candidate” to help Shepherd. Partnering with Northwood allows Shepherd to market the villas to a “broader spectrum of people,” she said.

“A lot of my residents need assistance with selling their homes before they come to us,” said Elizabeth Vaughn, admissions and marketing coordinator for Shepherd of the Valley-Poland. Seniors “love the community” but the problem she sees is people wanting to sell their home before moving.

“This is going to help Northwood as well as it helps us,” Vaughn said.

“We’re excited about it,” said Marlin Palich, general manager and principal broker of Northwood Realty Services of Ohio. Working with Northwood will help seniors get their properties  sold sooner so they can more quickly and “can set up their new lifestyle,” he added.

The Howland campus has 98 condo units and the Poland campus 86. The condos are all one-level, two-bedroom units, and some have sunrooms or bay windows, Olson said.

“There are no basements, no stairs that anyone has to worry about,” she said. “The electrical outlets are even higher up so the seniors don’t have to bend over so far.”

Shepherd is in the process of upgrading the units, replacing vinyl that looks like tile flooring with hardwood floor vinyl, for example.

Pictured: Northwood Realty general manager Marlin Palich, Northwood Howland sales manager Steve Ferrebee, Shepherd of the Valley Howland director of marketing and admissions Dawn Olson and Shepherd of the Valley Poland admissions marketing coordinator Elizabeth Vaughn.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.