Mary McCombs: Essentials

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Star City Six: Mary McCombs

Essentials ( is a subscription-based home maintenance program now available to clients in the Lincoln area. Mary McCombs is the co-founder of Essentials.

Tell us a little about your business.

To properly maintain your home, you should set and follow a regular schedule. There are monthly, seasonal, annual and semi-annual tasks that need to be done to keep your home in tip-top shape. In today’s get up and go world, who has the time to properly maintain a home? Essentials takes the proactive approach to home maintenance. Every quarter, the Essentials handyman will go through a complete set of tasks that are customized to your home. An example of these tasks include life/safety checks, indoor maintenance and exterior maintenance checks Proactive maintenance is essential to preserving the value of your home—without it, your home could lose up to 10% of its value. For example, some cracked caulk around the windows may not seem like much, but behind the caulk, water could get into your sheathing, causing mold and rot. Before you know it you’re spending thousands in repairs that could have been prevented by using a tube of caulk.

How did you get started in the business?

We have been in the commercial and community property management business since 2001. We understand the needs of homeowners and have built strong relationships with professionals in the industry, so we knew that our new business would be a good fit.

Tell us a little about your family.

My husband Bennie and I have two sons and six grandchildren. Our oldest, Jeff, passed away last year. Chris, our youngest son, has 20 years’ experience in the culinary field and is now a co-founder of Essentials. I also have the most wonderful dog, Miss Lola B, who is such a sassy, lovable Doberman.

What do you see as one of the biggest turning points in your life?

Speaking in front of a large audience. It really changed my professional career. It gave me confidence, poise, and the ability to be spontaneous. But what I loved most was the ability to share, motivate, and help others.

What is your favorite thing to do on a day off?

Well, there are several. I love playing golf as often as I can. There’s nothing like playing golf with your oldest grandson, talking and enjoying the outdoors. I also love cooking, making my own jams, jellies and salsas, and of course then there’s baking and gardening too. I could go on and on. Live life like there’s no tomorrow!

What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know?

I enjoy cruises but please don’t ask me to jump in the ocean. If I can’t touch the bottom then forget it!

What are you the most proud of?

Being a grandmother!

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

My father always told me if I was going to do something, to give 110%. He said if you fail, get up and do it again. You keep trying until you succeed. That’s where I got my competitive spirit.

If you could choose any other profession to be successful in, what would it be?

An interpreter working with the United Nations.

What is your favorite movie?

The Star Wars series. I went to school with Luke Skywalker, Mark Hamill.

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Granite City! (shout out to Josh Williams)

If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be?

Gene Kelly. He was one of the greatest dancers of all time.

If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so?

Email:; Website:

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