Successful Home Builder Paul Estridge Jr. Dies at 65 – Inside Indiana Business

Paul Estridge Jr. (photo provided)

Paul Estridge Jr., one of central Indiana’s best known and most prolific home builders, died Sunday at Methodist Hospital. He was 65.

Estridge, who received a lung transplant in November 2020, has been suffering from a lung infection in recent days that his family said he could not get over. He received the transplant to treat idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, an incurable lung disease.

Estridge has been a home builder his entire life and has had some dramatic ups and downs throughout his career. Last year he was named to the inaugural Indiana 250 class of the IBJ, a list of Indiana’s most influential business leaders.

He was 10 years old in 1967 when his late father, Paul Estridge Sr., founded Paul E. Estridge Homes. The son founded his own company, The Estridge Group, in 1983 at the age of 25 and bought out his father’s business in 1992.

Since 1967, Estridge companies have built nearly 9,000 homes in central Indiana. The company had up to 150 full-time employees and was building hundreds of homes a year in the early 2000s.

The Great Recession hit The Estridge Group and other construction companies hard. Building permits filed in central Indiana fell from 13,202 in 2005 to 3,720 in 2010, according to the Builders Association of Greater Indianapolis.

Estridge was forced to shut down the company in 2011 after accumulating more than $50 million in debt against assets of less than $5 million. He and his associates worked for David Weekley Homes of Houston and opened that homebuilder’s first office in Indianapolis.

Estridge made his comeback in 2013 when he founded Estridge Homes LLC with a $25 million investment from North Carolina-based private equity firm Mountain Real Estate Capital.

One of Estridge’s proudest achievements was Centennial, a 1,100-home development in Westfield that his company developed between 1998 and 2010. This neighborhood has been landscaped with more than 12,000 trees. It also includes a purpose built church adjacent to all houses.

The Estridge family businesses also developed the Harmony and Serenade neighborhoods in Westfield. Estridge has also been involved in some unique projects – his company built a custom home for Larry Bird in Indianapolis in 2002.

Estridge has also been an entrepreneur in many other industries during his 40-year tenure, including interconnect technologies, mortgage lending, parimutuel horse racing and aviation management.

He is survived by his wife Judy; three children, Mary Ellen McIntyre (Coleman), Elyse Harvey (Scott), and Joshua Estridge; and three grandchildren, Cashel Timothy McIntyre, Amos Paul McIntyre and Ruth Rose Harvey.

Funeral arrangements will be announced later.