Growing up in a small rural farming community in the Midwest, Brenda Muller found herself in awe of the vast farmland that surrounded her. She recalls the fertile plains and great expanses of her childhood with a sense of fondness.
“How big so many of the farms were, as well as large families who farmed them for generations to support themselves was interesting to me,” Brenda recalls.
While Brenda never aspired to be in the title insurance industry, she recognizes the steps along her path that led her to where she is today, as an expert in 1031 like-kind exchange.
“I doubt most people who wind up in the title insurance industry planned the path,” Brenda smiles. “It happens little by little.”
As a young adult, Brenda’s personal circumstances led her to work in a small law firm in that same farming community. “The law firm provided legal services and title insurance for many of their clients, which consisted of those farming families. That is when the fascination of ownership of land — how one actually made money with the land — took on a different meaning to me.”
Brenda began her professional career by typing title abstracts, going to the courthouse to retrieve land records, and reviewing surveys and plot maps for accuracy.
“I found it extremely interesting,” Brenda exclaims. “It reminded me of the awe I felt driving through the vast rural farmland. Reviewing public records of land, generation after generation passing the land down, was like putting a puzzle together with real property records at the county courthouse. It was extremely interesting to me how land was plotted, planned, divided, and handed down.”
That was how it all started. Brenda became hooked on everything real estate and eventually became a licensed title agent in various states for over 23 years.
Asset Preservation, Inc. (API)
Now with Asset Preservation, Inc. (API), Brenda continues to bring her discipline, work ethic, experience, and love for all things real estate to qualified intermediary services, assisting clients holding investment real estate defer capital gains tax. Over the years, she’s continued to adapt to changes in the market and move with the industry.
In 2016, Brenda was offered an opportunity with API. “After many years of branch management, closing transactions, training staff, and contributing to teams, it seemed a natural fit when Asset Preservation was looking for a division manager to provide education on 1031 exchange to clients.”
Established in 1990, Asset Preservation, Inc. (API) is a recognized national leader in 1031 exchanges, having successfully completed over 180,000 IRC Section 1031 exchanges.
“We provide Qualified Intermediary (QI) Services for clients utilizing IRC 1031,” Brenda explains. “We provide security, experience, and expertise for exchange clients. In addition to the delayed exchange, we offer reverse and improvement exchange structuring by way of parking arrangements. We educate the client on components of taxation so they understand their tax consequences along with the options they have prior to closing and opening the exchange. We ensure if the exchange is audited, they are compliant with the 1031 treasury rules and regulations.”
By focusing on maintaining honesty and integrity, while simultaneously providing expertise and security for clients, API is able to offer some of the highest quality services in the market.
“And we are unique in that we provide no-cost consultation, which allows our clients the opportunity to make a better-informed decision before they open an exchange,” Brenda adds.
A Life of Abundance
Despite her love for real estate, Brenda’s proudest “accomplishment” really has nothing to do with real estate at all.
“Without a doubt, my family is my absolute biggest win and proudest accomplishment,” Brenda smiles. “Hands down.”
With five children, change is constant. Adapting to that change and continual learning is what has allowed Brenda to continue to grow.
“Second, I am blessed to actually have a career I completely enjoy, which I am extremely passionate about. Starting in the title insurance industry in the early 90s opened many opportunities for me over the last 28 years — to grow, learn, and even own my own company. I am extremely blessed.”
After 28 years in the title insurance business, Brenda continues to call on the inspiration that began her professional journey all those years ago. By remaining inspired, she shows up to work every day with a smile on her face, ready to help the next person.
“Even now, when flying over the rural areas of the country or even cities, I am in awe of how the land looks from above. All the farms are outlined perfectly — cities, lakes, streams running through the land. It simply amazes me.”
For more information, visit apiexchange.com.