LEMONT – The Century 21 office in Lemont has gone from a family owned business to part of the largest Century 21 franchise in the world, but office members take pride in maintaining the same community connections they have had for more than 30 years.
“I don’t think that (customers have) noticed a difference because it’s the same agents who are here – the continuity of the same agents taking care of business for them,” said agent Emily Mansell, who has worked for Century 21 in Lemont for 24 years.
Century 21 Olsick, which opened in Lemont in 1979, was founded by William Olsick, who got his start in the real estate industry in 1948 in Chicago.
Agent Maryann Rogers, who has worked in the Lemont office for 10 years, said the family owned business included William’s sons William Jr., Bob and Brian.
She called the business one-stop shopping because it included real estate, mortgage and insurance.
William Sr. eventually retired and gave ownership to one of his sons but remained active in the office as a broker until his death in 2011 at age 87.
It was after that, that Century 21 Olsick became part of Century 21 Affiliated, which has offices in five states in the Midwest.
“We reach out to companies that, in this case, lost their broker and that were not quite as strong as they had been at one point,” said Cheryl Hase, director of business development for Century 21 Affiliated.
Rogers said William Olsick had been approached about joining a larger franchise but wanted to keep the office a family business.
Hase said much of the changes Century 21 Affiliated has brought have been on the back end for agents, such as additional resources and training.
“A lot of the technical ends that we really weren’t able to take advantage of because we were a small, independently owned office, now we have access to,” Rogers said.
The Lemont office has maintained its involvement in the community, such as the having a booth at Heritage Fest and being part of the Lemont Chamber of Commerce’s Cruise Night, the Halloween Hoedown and Keepataw Days.
However, the Olsicks are not completely gone from the business. Bob Olsick remains an agent for Century 21 Affiliated.
About Century 21 Affiliated
Location: 1180 State St., Lemont