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Agents of ‘Integrity’: RE/MAX realty opens in Dickinson

Press Photo by Dustin Monke RE/MAX Integrity Agency is made up of, left to right, Realtor Marie Swensen, and real estate brokers Lorrie Nantt and Ninetta Wandler, shown on Aug. 6 outside of their downtown Dickinson office in the old Ivanhoe building on East Villard Street.

Marie Swensen, a Dickinson real estate agent, got to know Lorrie Nantt, a real estate broker, through real estate transactions. Swensen said she saw how Nantt interacted with customers, the kind of ethical person she was, the way she viewed life and felt she had met a kindred spirit.

“We both hold ethics in high regard … have the same concern for people,” Swensen said.

Integrity, Swensen said, was the one thing she could hold on to when growing up in challenging circumstances in Alabama. And she said it “plays a key role in what I am as a person.”

Swensen said she lives by the C.S. Lewis quote: “Integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching.”

So when the two decided they could have a “fantastic partnership” and jumped on a franchise opportunity to own Dickinson’s first RE/MAX agency, the name they chose for it reflects what’s important to them.

Their new business’ name: RE/MAX Integrity Realty, which opened in May in the old Ivanhoe building at 33 E. Villard St., Suite A.

“We have a vision for the future,” said Nantt, who has already brought on another well-known agent and wants more.

“We want to grow, be exciting, changing … known for our integrity and honesty.”

And their abilities. Nantt said she has sold everything from a tiny $24,000 house in Halliday to land and commercial properties. A current property they think would be a great revenue generator for a buyer is a former assisted-living facility that has the needed approvals to be used as an apartment house.

However, their new agency, if it has a specialty, is residential properties, Nantt said. They love, really love, houses. Nantt said houses all have their own histories and personalities and so hates it when she sees one in rough shape.

The partners say they thrive on finding that dream home for a buyer. And with RE/MAX — a company with more than 93,000 agents that spends millions of dollars on its brand and marketing — their clients have unbelievable resources, Swensen said.

“Our website has international outreach,” Nantt said.

Nantt, who grew up on a Jamestown farm, at one time intended on being a farm wife because she wanted to be just like her mom. She ended up going to Valley City State University for elementary education. She also worked as a nanny in Washington, D.C., for a couple years, but didn’t like the traffic, nor that no one seemed to have time for anyone else. She said that experience helped her realize how special North Dakota is.

Nantt, who is married and has three children, said she has had a variety of jobs, including secretarial work. Her career change to real estate happened in 2008.

She said after her father died at a young age in 2007, she was reminded of how he had always told his children to “love what we’re doing.”

Nantt, realizing how short life truly was, became determined to work at something she loved.

“I’d always loved houses and people,” Nantt said.

Real estate seemed the right fit. It also seemed right for Swensen, who switched careers and has been a real estate agent for two years.

“Real estate is very much my niche in life,” Swensen said. “I love it. I have a passion for it.”

RE/MAX Integrity Agency

What: Real estate agency

Owners: Lorrie Nantt and Marie Swensen

Realtors: Swensen and Ninetta Wandler

Address: 33 E. Villard St., Dickinson

Phone: 701-483-9851