After a very modest upbringing in rural Northern Michigan, and like many kids from a small town, I was determined to leave the area and never return. I graduated from mighty Johannesburg-Lewiston High school (class of 20) and moved onto Michigan State University (50,000 students). I didn’t have much at that time, only a strong work ethic, some past athletic success – as much as could be expected of a 5’7” 125lb athlete anyway – and a bit of self-doubt going to such a large school. Things worked out pretty well and shortly after graduating from MSU, my first career was that of an information technology professional. My fast-tracked management career was the result of my ability to speak with technical people and relay their techno speak to management. An ability to play interpreter, technology, and communication skills eventually led to my last role as that of a Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer with a $9B financial services firm in East Lansing, MI.
Despite having a great job, I threw caution to the wind and asked my wife to let me scratch my entrepreneurial itch and quit my very stable corporate job. I had become passionate about real estate and being an entrepreneur and thus a second career was born and we moved to Colorado’s esteemed Vail Valley. We purchased a couple of hospitality-based businesses, combined them, and then sold them to our largest client. After selling our company, we were thrilled to move back home to Northern Michigan where I earned my real estate brokers license.
The past several years has seen vacation rental income climb to historic heights and to say the industry has changed in the last fifteen years would be an understatement. Moreover, its changing quickly and not everyone is poised for future success and, in fact, many homeowners could already be at a disadvantage. That’s because vacation rental sites are fine-tuning the way homes are listed to maximize profits. If you don’t have a professional team working to get your home the most exposure possible, this opportunity might pass you by.
Northern Michigan Escapes exists to serve others and address the aforementioned marketplace challenges in an unique, status-quo challenging, entrepreneurial, and hungry manner. Despite our fast-growing company, we remain as hungry as when we managed two properties. The team and I spend every day relentlessly trying to make our company better. To that end, we’ve created the following centers of excellence to help with the lifecycle of vacation home ownership: property management, property services, vacation rentals, real estate, interior design and remodeling services, and association management.
We’re straightforward in our intentions and committed to building mutually beneficial relationships, with travelers and homeowners alike. I encourage you to spend some time on our website and get to know us better and hope you’ll discover Northern Michigan Escapes to be something unique in today’s business environment. You have my word we will work hard to become, and equally as important, achieve our vision of becoming “Your Trusted Vacation Home Advisory Services Firm.”
Brook E. Walsh
President & Founder