Business of the Month Trademark Title

Charity

Faith In The Future

By Susan Cushing

Charity Malmberg, founder/owner of Trademark Title, knows only too well what REALTORS experience starting and sustaining their business. Malmberg’s own roots in the real estate world began as an agent working for her mother in a small town in the southwest region of Minnesota.

“It was a family effort,” she says, “My mother was a real estate agent and had the opportunity to purchase an existing brokerage and wanted my father and myself to join her and all be co-owners. So, we all helped launch the brokerage and were part of its growth.”

But Malmberg was growing too, and wanted to spread her wings and explore her independence on a larger stage, so she moved to the “big city.”

With her background in real estate and understanding of the intricacies that determine the success or failure of every transaction, Malmberg gravitated to the field of title.

“Title seemed to be the fit that I needed,” she says, “although I still maintain my real estate license and keep it active. It helps me stay in the loop and help me better understand what my clients are going through.”

By 2008, Malmberg had accrued enough hands-on experience in title, both in best practices and glimpsing areas she would like to see improved, that she decided to take a leap of faith and launch her own business. While her intentions were the best, and primarily focused on ways to better serve the local REALTORS®, the timing was a bit off.

“Eric and I started Trademark Title Services Inc. in one of the worst financial times,” she recalls. “We were newly married, had our first child on the way, five employees, three offices, and money borrowed. With perseverance and a small-town work ethic, we set out with a desire to better the industry by supplying an experienced and dedicated team of employees to help service the needs of real estate consumers. Through these values, we’ve grown to over 50 employees, 15 offices and over 26,000 satisfied customers.”

Aside from the obvious goals in opening a new title company – to provide vital research to make sure transactions are legal – Malmberg wanted to provide services that go beyond the norm. With her experience as a REALTOR, she could clearly appreciate the trials and challenges each transaction represents and wanted to make the process as stress-free and seamless as possible.

“We began with our vision,” says Malmberg. “After working in real estate both from a REALTOR’S® standpoint as well as in title, I knew there were things that could be done better, easier and create a better, less stressful experience. Over the years, our vision has grown and evolved. Just as we need to keep up with the ever-changing landscape of real estate, as well as new laws, we have also adjusted our own culture.

“In September 2016, we started working with author, speaker and coach Erik Therwanger,” she continues, “and it’s already had a huge impact on our business. With Erik’s help, we began to see how our company needed to change in order to grow – the personnel changes, organizational structure and accountability we needed to succeed. We developed a vision to lead the industry with our unwavering commitment to the customer by providing peace of mind through excellence in title services while continuing to be the real estate community’s preferred choice for personal, professional and educational development.

According to Malmberg, much of the focus of these adjustments has been a stronger, more tangible appreciation for their employees. Having enjoyed unprecedent loyalty and employee longevity, in a business that is notorious for high turnover, Malmberg wanted to extend and enhance the ways they make their appreciation known through a variety of forms of recognition and acknowledgement.

“I feel truly blessed to have the caliber of people working for us that we do,” she says. “Every one of the Trademark Title team is highly trained, qualified and most importantly, dedicated to serving our clients in the best way possible.

“I know it’s said often about a company, but truly ours is a family-like atmosphere despite our growth and number of locations,” she adds. “We fully support each and every one, not just professionally but in their personal lives whether that means celebrating weddings, births, graduations or providing comfort during sadder events such as divorce and loss. Some of these people have been with me since day one and I don’t take that kind of loyalty for granted.”

Naturally, this appreciation and empowerment of employees filters down directly to the client. Happy and proud of their work, the people of Trademark Title strive to provide the most accurate, efficient and timely service while maintaining a strong line of communication.

“This process is so intense and so critical so naturally everyone concerned, the REALTOR, the buyer and the seller, want to know what’s going on and where we are in the process,” says Malmberg. “We believe that communication is key to everything we do. Over the years, we have built incredible relationships with real estate professionals throughout the metro Twin Cities area and a lot of that is due to our commitment to quality service and maintaining open communication.”

Over the past nine years, Malmberg has enjoyed not only the expansion and growth of Trademark Title and her professional family, but her own family as well. She and husband Eric are now the proud parents of three children ages 8 ½, 7 and 5 ½.

“We are certainly blessed,” says Malmberg. “It was a difficult first few years, but I believe we’re all stronger for that. I know that hard work will only take you so far, and you have to have faith for the rest. We are very aware of this and try to show our appreciation.”