In His Own Words | Title Service & Escrow Co.’s Sam Ross
November 21, 2016
Name/Title/Company: Sam Ross, manager, Yerington office of Title Service & Escrow Co.
Number of years with company: 45
Number of years in the profession: 49
Last book read: The Woman in Cabin Ten
Favorite movie: Doctor Zhivago
Favorite musical group or genre: '60s music
Spouse, kids or pets: Wife, 6 kids, 5 grandchildren, white Lab named Beckett
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Tell us about your company and the duties of your position.
Sam Ross: Title Service & Escrow Co. was founded in northern Nevada 45 years ago and I am proud to say we carry one of the most accurate set of records in our territory dating back to the Civil War. My role as the manager of our Yerington office is to oversee daily operations, handle real estate closings and issuance of policy and title insurance. We also have a full loan servicing department meaning we collect mortgage payments from a borrower. It is a personal goal of mine to serve the residents of Lyon and Mineral counties, and to earn the confidence and respect of our clients year after year. This is something I take great pride in and continue to make this our mission every single day.
NNBW: How did you get into this profession?
Ross: I got into this profession because back in the '60s, the town we lived in had no title company. I worked for my father's mortgage company, I enjoyed the hunt and the research and I earned my self-imposed education.
NNBW: What do you enjoy most about working in your field?
Ross: Being in the type of industry I am in, you must be a people person. People are shy about purchasing and financing real estate and are constantly looking for a friendly face, not just someone that will give them the jargon but someone who helps during the investment and makes it less stressful. I enjoy helping people, finding out what their fears are and helping them succeed instead of fail because investing might not be the right fit for them or because everyone else is doing it. Helping people understand that it is OK to back away if now is not the time. They sometimes just need reassurance.
NNBW: What is the most challenging part about your job?
Ross: With being the owner of any company comes great challenges. The most challenging part about my job is training new personnel and keeping up with federal and state regulations. Although challenging, I would not change my career path. If you do not know about title and escrow services you have to learn it from someone who already knows the systems.
NNBW: What advice would give someone who wants to get in your profession?
Ross: Compared to other countries, the United States is controlled by the population, not the government when it comes to record keeping. This is a demanding profession and I would recommend anyone taking this route if they can find a job in this field with the proper training. People will always invest in homes. It is the American dream. Title and escrow companies are around because lenders can't give money directly to clients so they must go through escrow companies.
NNBW: What was the best advice anyone ever gave you either professionally or personally?
Ross: My dad was my mentor and always pushed me to be an independent thinker and follow my passion. He was my best friend and my mentor.
NNBW: Has there been someone who was especially influential in helping you establish your career or in reaching your higher goals? If so, who and how?
Ross: Two men were instrumental to helping me enjoy my career: Emry Salgo and Ray Peterson. Both worked for title companies and convinced me to stay with it no matter how hard it was or was going to get.
NNBW: Is there any educational advancement that is essential for someone in your career field?
Ross: Accounting is extremely important and anyone interested in this career field must understand numbers, particularly old school math. Percentages and fractions are used in calculating pro-rations of taxes, commissions and the basis of how those systems work. Being a people person is important as well because buying a home is a high stress time in one's life and we need to be able to understand and react to what our clients need.
NNBW: How do you manage your time between the responsibilities of your profession and your personal life?
Ross: When your shift is over you go home. I put in my eight hours, I don't take calls at home, no weekends, no holidays. I used to live on a farm and this is very different from farming hours.
NNBW: What was your first job?
Ross: I worked on the farm with my family since I was 8, and continued when my Air Force Service ended; then I went to work for First American Title Co. in Reno before opening our own company.
NNBW: What are your hobbies? How do you spend your time away from work?
Ross: Fly fishing and regular fishing. I have been all over North and South America. Alaska, Costa Rica, Canada, Beliz, Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia, and so on. I also enjoy doing things outdoors and with my family including riding ATVs. I have two boats, which we take to the San Francisco Bay and the Delta. The bass boat we take to bass lakes in California; and I love to read.
NNBW: Why did you choose a career in northern Nevada? What do you like about living/working here?
Ross: Northern Nevada is a beautiful place to be outside with all of the mountains and places to go. It also helps that the laws are very pro-business. Regulations and user problems were non-existent and it was very easy to start a business in Nevada when I began.