I have had a mowing business in my off days from firefighting on and off for years. I have always had good experience with echo and shindaiwa (my two favorite trimmers by far.) I have used many stihl products and love their chainsaws, however, I do find their trimmers to not perform quite as well as some of the other top models. They seem to get vibrations and feel loose after many hours of use. That being said I'm sure that as a homeowner you will be more than happy with your new stihl.
Oh... and def get a straight shaft.